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Green ideas for a more sustainable office space

A lot of studies have related a greener workplace to more productivity. As such, it is necessary to ensure that your workplace is green, healthy and has a low impact on the surrounding environment. Here are some simple tips that can help you achieve that easily and effectively.

Use energy efficiently

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Start by optimizing the energy settings for all the electrical appliances that you use, including computers, printers, fax machines and so on. Even standby settings will draw power. So switch off appliances you don’t need to use at the moment and remove their plug from the socket.

Consider installing a power strip into which you can connect all your electrical appliances. This way, you can easily switch off all the appliances by switching off the strip. Turn off the lights when not needed and try allowing as much natural light into the workplace during the day. Program climate control devices to operate at a reasonable temperature. All of these practices would help you save at least 30% of the energy you would otherwise use on a daily basis.

Digitize the workplace

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Instead of relying on paper for operations, digitize your workplace. Opt for online communication modes like messages and mails. Store your files on the computer with necessary backups, rather than stacking them as paper files in storage cabinets. In place of reviewing documents on paper, consider doing the same onscreen. Share documents via PDF emails rather than sending them to each individual. And opt for electronic signatures to minimize paper documentation as well.

Choose green alternatives to paper and other materials

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You cannot totally rid your workplace off paper for some office needs would demand you use the same. So opt for eco-friendly alternatives like recycled paper instead. Make sure you choose paper that utilizes minimum chlorine bleaching as well as a high percentage of post-consumer content as well.

You can also substitute normal paper envelopes with those made of recycled paper. Other materials that can also be substituted by recycled alternatives include printer cartridges, pens, markers, pencils and cloth towels. You can also opt for biodegradable cleaners for the workplace as well as biodegradable soaps in the bathrooms and kitchens.

Make the surrounding spaces greener

Ceiling paint

Redesign your workplace to reflect greener surroundings. Opt for floor to ceiling windows to allow maximum light into the space. Place indoor plants to improve air quality. Choose green furniture options, like those that are recyclable or made from recycled materials. Proper ventilation can be arranged by opting for vents while toxicity can be further reduced by opting for low VOC paints and green cleaning options.

Opt for greener lunches

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In most cases, the kitchen, cafeteria and dining areas in the kitchen tend to be the most impactful spaces, considering the incredible amount of food and organic materials wasted in them. You can thwart this by taking simple measures like opting to bring your lunch in reusable containers and bottles, including reusable plates, napkins and utensils as well.

In case you are ordering take-outs or deliveries, consider joining with several other employees to give one large order that would most surely minimize the waste otherwise generated by individual packages. Also avoid wasting food by ordering only the desired quantity of food you will likely eat.

Minimize food wastage in the kitchen and cafeteria by setting up garbage cans to collect foods and organic materials. Give away these materials to nearby gardens or farms for composting purposes.

Promote sustainable living

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In addition to going green yourself, promote the same to the others working in your office. Create recycling campaigns that would encourage other employees to take part in these activities. Split them into teams and set goals for each team to meet within a time period, offering incentives for those who do so. This will surely get everybody to join hands in creating a greener workplace for sure.

Summary

Greener workplaces are no doubt more productive. Consider these pointers when opting to transform your workplace into a greener, healthier space.

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Dr Prem Jagyasi

Dr Prem is an award winning strategic leader, renowned author, publisher and highly acclaimed global speaker. Aside from publishing a bevy of life improvement guides, Dr Prem runs a network of 50 niche websites that attracts millions of readers across the globe. Thus far, Dr Prem has traveled to more than 40 countries, addressed numerous international conferences and offered his expert training and consultancy services to more than 150 international organizations. He also owns and leads a web services and technology business, supervised and managed by his eminent team. Dr Prem further takes great delight in travel photography.

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