I read an article in The Green Life that discusses how eco-friendly workplaces make for happier employees. In fact, morale is measurably higher when employees perceive their companies as environmentally responsible. Corporate environmental responsibility shows a measure of concern for both community and the planet, so I’m not surprised that workers would find more contentment in an eco-friendly office; I know I do.
At Amble’s corporate headquarters in Chicago, we pride ourselves on being as green as possible, right down to our fluorescent lighting and cork flooring.
You are probably most familiar with cork being used to stopper wine bottles and for school bulletin boards, but it also makes a beautiful and eco-friendly floor. Cork comes from the Cork Oak tree found mostly in Portugal and Spain. After the tree reaches the age of 25, cork is harvested from the tree once every ten years. The cork is simply stripped from the trunk. These trees live for about 200 years, providing numerous harvests from a single tree.
Accented by a multitude of luscious plants, our office (in a small way) reminds us of the wonderful foliage on Isla Palenque. These plants also provide us with fresh air when we are trapped indoors during the cold winter months.
Our office is a small and open-plan space that is multi-functional. Because we do not have multiple rooms and walls separating our office space, this eliminates the need to heat or cool numerous rooms, allowing us to save a tremendous amount of energy. Large windows allow natural light to travel throughout the office eliminating the need for copious amounts of artificial lighting. Our meeting room serves as a multi-functional space with each department sharing its use while also giving us an excellent space for company lunches!
We also utilize multiple sustainable business practices in order to do our part for the environment. Our appliances are all energy star efficient. In fact, our coffee machine provides single servings in order to cut down on waste and eliminate the need for paper filters. The team also makes a conscious effort to recycle everything. Our mouse pads and coasters are made from scrap leather fabric from Design Associate Manya’s handbag business. Blue recycle bins can be found all over the office, and our team members use them as much as possible. Paper is one of the easiest items to re-use so we all save old documents and print on the backside whenever possible. The way our office is set up, it inspires our team members, who work in various disciplines, to incorporate environmental consciousness into what they do.
So, with a little effort and pride in your environment, it’s extremely easy to be green. In fact, I challenge you to think of small ways at work to make your business more “green.” Making employees happy and helping save our world is a win-win! Looks like Kermit just got schooled.