Ways of working

Lean and green

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) – a company’s responsibility toward well-being, society and the environment – is an increasingly important part of business culture. In fact, according to Deloitte research, 87% of millennials believe a company’s value can’t be measured in just financial terms. Likewise, Regus studies show that over half of Indian and South African employees consider it important that their company carry out CSR initiatives. In Brazil, the figure reaches 86%. Worldwide, 40% of workers believe their sector should still do more for CSR.

For large, global companies, it’s difficult to make all employees feel like they’re contributing to a CSR goal – on-the-ground social initiatives might not resonate with staff several time zones away in another country. The best way to approach this is to find companywide initiatives that everyone can participate in.

One simple place to start is the environment – being green is a priority whether you’re based in London, Mumbai or San Francisco – and initiatives can be rolled out companywide. Not only that, but cutting back on energy consumption can also lead to savings for your business, giving you a win-win situation.

 

Commuting

There are over 1.2 billion cars on the road today. That’s a lot of environmentally hazardous emissions – and the number is set to increase to 2.0 billion by 2035. What can you do?

  • Offer carpool incentives or benefit perks for bicycles or rail passes to encourage employees to give up on the solo drive to work.
  • Consider who really needs to work in the office. If someone rarely has physical meetings and works largely online, promote co-working spaces closer to residential areas to cut down the commute – also allowing you to reduce underused, expensive desk space.

 

Working practices

Use overheads to find the biggest areas of consumption – and target them for cutbacks.

  • The average US worker uses 10,000 sheets of paper a year, yet 45% of printed pages are thrown away within 24 hours. Paperless meetings and printer credits, which allow people to see how much they print, are both simple ways of reducing paper use.

Encourage your staff to turn off computer monitors when they’re not in use, even if that’s just over lunch break or when they’re in a meeting. Statistics show it can reduce computer energy use by 70%.