Businesses are being forced to develop entirely different processes and leverage non-traditional structures in order to remain profitable. Fortunately for us, sustainable business practices do not have to be difficult to implement, they just require a change in your way of thinking.
Examine your décor with a critical eye
When looking for new décor for your office, make sure you look for items made from recycled or biodegradable materials such as wood, wicker or natural rubber. If you are currently in possession of furniture items that are not made from sustainable materials and you would like to get rid of them, try selling them or donating them to charity instead of sending them to the landfill.
Avoid migraine-inducing Volatile Organic Compounds
Volatile organic compounds (VOC) are a group of carbon-based chemicals found in most paint as well as other office products and equipment such as correction fluids, carbonless copy paper, cleaning supplies, copiers and printers that easily evaporate at room temperature. They produce a strong, migraine-inducing odor and can negatively impact your health in the short and long term, especially when exposed to them indoors.
Use less and reuse more
Office items we use every day such as paper clips, folders, pens and binders can be reused over and over again and adopting a “use less and reuse more often” strategy for your office supplies save energy and resources since less materials will have to be re-harvested and refined to produce more of the product.
Moreover, outdated technology doesn’t have to end up in your local landfill. When it’s time to upgrade your wireless routers, desktops and other hardware or you need to replace the ink and toner on your printer, try looking for a business recycling program instead of throwing them out.
Invest in clean technologies
If you’re serious about lowering your carbon footprint in the workplace then you should already be leveraging cloud technology. Everything from point of sale software to image editing applications is now being offered by big brands like Adobe on subscription-based pricing models. Say goodbye to multiple license keys!
In addition, these “on demand software” services have the potential to reduce IT support costs by outsourcing your hardware and software support and maintenance to the third party vendor which is significantly less carbon-intensive than maintaining on-premise software.
Don’t neglect your natural performance boosters
Finally, take advantage of natural performance boosters like positioning your desk near a window and take in benefits of natural lighting. If your office is devoid of windows, adding some live plants to increase the oxygen in the room, some fresh cut flowers for color and hanging a few nature photos may do the trick.