From homes to offices, many think that going green is a complicated process that would put a strain on their budget but that can’t be further from the truth. Just as any intentional big change in one’s life, it takes planning and perseverance but the benefits it brings surpass any potential implementation hassle by far. Having in mind that you need to find sustainable solutions, it’s best to ‘go green’ in stages so here are some areas to consider on your way to creating an eco-friendly office.
Find a solution for the stationary
Every busy office uses up a lot of stationary on a daily basis and all of those items usually end up on a landfill somewhere. One of the easiest practices to implement to decrease the amount of office waste is paper recycling. This is a practical idea because even though we live in a digital era, paper still has widespread usage and your employees can simply walk up to the box and put their papers on the pile. The alternative to this is to go completely paperless if your business industry allows you to.
And now we come to notorious plastic pens – you can encourage your employees to write with wooden pencils as much as possible, such as post-it notes messages, while they can bring laptops or tablets to meetings. Also, some of these wooden pencils can be planted so you can make a beautiful green nook to complement your office design. And if they need to leave a more durable trail, you can opt for bamboo pens which can be refilled with ink.
Be mindful of the energy consumption
With technology being one of the basic tools of each business, why not use it to create an eco-friendlier office? There are many solutions which can help you monitor the energy consumption levels in your office as well as control them which means that leaving computers and other numerous devices on after working hours by accident will not be an issue anymore. In energy consumption terms, more control means less consumption.
This also applies to the office lighting because it is highly irresponsible to leave them on during the entire night. However, insisting on efficiency in energy consumption doesn’t necessarily mean you need to sacrifice the overall design composition. There is a wide selection of reliable LED products which are energy-efficient, aesthetically pleasing and easy to maintain. LED lighting solutions can be used both as a direct and additional source of illumination so they are widely applicable.
Choose sustainable furniture
Working 9 to 5 at a sedentary job means that it is recommendable that, besides taking regular breaks to stretch your limbs and exercising outside of work, your body posture needs to be in the optimal sitting position provided by ergonomic chairs. Luckily, people find more and more ways of reusing plastic so for instance, one student came up with the idea of making waterproof backpacks from old discarded office chairs.
As for the tables, you can go with bamboo as a material since it grows fast and self-regenerates from its roots making it a very sustainable material. Bamboo tables are eco-friendly, durable, and can easily fit into most office interior designs. As for the used furniture, there are different solutions so if it would be more cost-effective to purchase new furniture than transport the current pieces to your new office space, you can donate your furniture which is then dismantled and repaired or used to create new.
Suggest means of transportation
A sustainable office will never be truly green unless you and your employees are fully committed to that cause. For business owners, this means practicing what you preach and your eco-friendly ways need to spread outside of the office as well. If you need to have a company car, you should consider electric cars due to them not producing any harmful emissions, as well as being economical in terms of maintenance cost. But whenever you can, try to find an alternative way to come to work to be more physically active.
With that in mind, you should motivate your employees to do the same, so whoever lives closer to the office can walk or use a bicycle which means they would come energized and ready to work. Naturally, if some employees live far from work, it would be time-consuming or even physically impossible to come to work on foot or with a bicycle but they can use public transportation or share a car to work, which is becoming a popular option.
Once you start researching, you will soon discover that there are eco-friendly alternatives to many everyday items used in the office or a household, for that matter. Wooden staplers, plantable pencils, bamboo ink pens are just of the possible solutions for decreasing office waste and not to mention paper recycling and re-used furniture. By opting for a sustainable office, you will find a plethora of practical solutions to help the environment which can also be aesthetically pleasing.