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Builders green design

When the days get warmer, our minds turn to fresh starts in our personal lives (hello, jogging, hiking, walking), our family lives (summer vacation for the kiddies!), and our business lives. In the summertime, many of us are able to enjoy a quieter time in our workplaces, whether it’s due to the academic year, the slowness of the season, or just those lazy, hazy days of summer! So why not take those slower days to work out some eco strategies for the office? Read on for five tips on how you can stay eco-friendly (and eco-chic!) at work!

Cut Down on Travel:

Depending on your career, you may be able to reduce your actual office time – thus reducing your career’s carbon footprint! How can this work? Talk to your superiors or colleagues about how this might be able to work for you. Can you work from home one or two days a week? Can you attend meetings online, rather than travelling? According to many recent studies, businesses can benefit from a four-day workweek, which means that employees add a bit of time to each day for four days, and then enjoy a three-day weekend. In fact, State workers in Utah have shifted almost primarily to a four day work-week. Not only do employees not drive to work on their off-day, but the offices themselves are closed, resulting in decreased energy use (a 13% energy cut, according to the Associated Press). Happier employees and decreased energy? Sounds great to us!

Treat Your Office as You Treat Your Home:

Many people have different standards at the office than they do at home – and it’s time to change that! Make sure your office has a recycling program, and only print items that are necessary and if you must print, use both sides! Bring some real plants into the office to give yourself some green – and better the air quality! Reduce your use of couriers (most items can be sent online) and make sure that unused appliances and office equipment are turned off when not in use! What could be easier than making sure your power bar is flicked off at the end of the day? Not only does it save energy, it also saves money – up to 25% of your electrical bill, according to a study from Berkeley University. Make eco-friendly choices in all aspects of your office life – from the coffee in your reusable mug to the major corporate purchases!

Be a Tech Queen (or King):

Use technology to reduce your paper waste and energy usage. A service that we love and would like to share with you is YouSendIt. We often have to send very large files to our partners – files that would be far too large to send by email. Along came YouSendIt. We use YouSendIt Pro which allows us to send files by email that are up to 2 GB in size! This service has cut our CD use and courier requirements substantially saving on the environment AND saving us money! Another great service is Skype.com. This service allows you to communicate with office staff from your home. Add a webcam and it will feel like you are in the office!

Buy Eco:

There are certain items offices need to buy, such as paper and ink. Make sure your office has a “shop green” policy. Recycled paper and toner cartridges are often cost effective as well as being highly efficient and great for the environment. Energy Star electronic products, energy-efficient fluorescent light bulbs, fair trade coffee are all smart purchases.

Wear Green:

Just because you’re heading to the office doesn’t mean you need to wear polyester! Choose sustainable, organic clothing that still looks professional. This season, start fresh with functional items that are fashionable as well as earth-friendly. The crisp, professional-casual look of the Hornby Denim Belted Jacket is stylish and perfect for work – plus it’s certified organic! Match that with the Leaf in Fern computer bags made of 100% recycled microsuede – perfect for toting your laptop to and from the office!

recycling bins

Talk to your colleagues and make sure everyone knows about your company’s eco-friendly efforts: it’s an important part of corporate culture. Feel good about going to work this spring – from what you wear to the changes you make. Spring is the perfect time for a fresh start – so bring your green lifestyle to work with you!

Article Source: EzineArticles.com wrote by Adrian Desbarats

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