Some people may be more interested in environmental sustainability than others, but that doesn’t mean that everyone can’t do their part when it comes to corporate sustainability efforts.
According to behavioral science, the key is to start with low-effort requests and actions that get people to see how easy change can be, also provide information to show the impact their actions have made.
Here are 10 low-effort actions that you can encourage everyone in the office to take. Let us know which are the most successful amongst your team!
- Find out what recyclables your town collects: If you have curbside recycling programs, you’ve likely received a notification in the mail about which items can be recycled through your town’s recycling program. If not, or if you misplaced it, a quick search online will provide you with all the information on what can and cannot be recycled.
- Calculate your household’s carbon footprint: Use a carbon calculator to tabulate the direct emissions from your everyday actions. Once you know your footprint you can start taking actions to reduce it.
- Save your leftovers: Did you have an amazing dinner last night? Don’t waste the leftovers! They’ll be just as good – and sometimes better – the next day. Approximately 1.2 to 2 billion tons of food goes to waste every year, eating your left overs helps cuts this waste.
- Load your dishwasher without rinsing dishes thoroughly: Scrape plates and load the dishwasher. That’s right, sometimes being sustainable is actually easier! Scraping dishes rather than rinsing saves water, as does running the dishwasher only when it’s completely full.
- Don’t iron your clothes: Ironing takes up time and is just another hassle when it comes to doing laundry. It also uses between 1,000 and 1,800 watts of power. Instead of reaching for the iron, dry your laundry on a clothes line or remove and fold them straight from the dryer to avoid wrinkles.
- Use free tap water instead of buying bottled: This is another sustainable choice that also saves you money! Grab a glass or a reusable water bottle to take advantage of the free tap water. You’ll also keep a bottle out of a landfill.
- Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth: It’s an easy idea, but an unexpectedly difficult habit to make stick. Practice makes perfect. Give yourself some time to build turning the water off into your tooth brushing routine. If it will help you remember, stick a note on the mirror.
- Close the shades to save energy: In the summer shades will block the sun’s hot rays during the day and can cut your cooling bill by up to 20 percent. During cold winter nights shades can prevent heat from escaping through windows and reduce heat loss by up to 56 percent. Enjoy the privacy, the savings on your bill and your sustainable decision!
- Get a reusable travel mug: Skipping just one disposable cup a day prevents around 23 pounds of waste per year. Find a coffee mug that can keep your cup of joe piping hot for longer than a paper one, this will help you save money by making your own coffee, or see if your favorite café will fill it for you. Some cafés will even give you a discount for bringing your own mug!
- Use the revolving door when it’s an option: Who knew using a revolving door could be a revolutionary act? Whenever you see one, use one. One person using a revolving door in cold weather saves enough energy to run a 60-watt light bulb for 23 minutes!
Remember it takes time to break a bad habit, and even longer to build great ones. Be patient with yourself, set goals, and celebrate each victory. Even the smallest of actions can have a huge impact.
If you’re interested in learning more about the environmental impact your team could make by taking these actions, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask how our platform can measure sustainability programs like this!