How to push forward environmental initiatives at work?
Corporate social responsibility strategies are a fundamental part of doing business. Once a ‘nice to have’, nowadays, companies are genuinely interested in learning more about what they can do to support their communities and improve their environmental sustainability.
One way to push forward environmental initiatives is to create a working group internally to make positive strides toward your corporate social responsibility goals. But how can you do this?
First you need to bring together a group of like-minded individuals passionate about supporting your business aka a ‘green team’. But how do you do that? Let’s find out.
What is a green team?
A green team is a group of people that come together to push forward environmental initiatives.
Sharing a passion for corporate social responsibility, the green team understands why your organisation should consider building out company wide green initiatives, like sustainable transport options. They’ll work collaboratively to encourage employee engagement and create a sustainable, environmentally friendly culture.
Both RocketMill and TPXimpact used their green teams to encourage the adoption of our EV ownership within their companies, and campaigned to add our EV salary sacrifice scheme as an extra benefit to boost staff engagement. Not only is an electric car salary sacrifice scheme good for the environment, it’s good for staff recruitment and retention too.
What’s the business value of a green team?
As well as positioning your organisation as one that’ environmentally friendly and contributes to the reduction of pollution, other benefits of creating a green team include:
- More efficient organisational operations that reduce waste and save energy
- Better employee engagement and higher workplace satisfaction
- Greater sustainability throughout the organisation
Read more about the advantages of sustainable benefits in our whitepaper.
Why is it important to push forward environmental initiatives?
From reducing organisational waste to increasing energy efficiency, environmental initiatives positively impact the day-to-day operations of organisations. But why is this important? Well, initiatives enable businesses to position themselves as eco-friendly and sustainable. They also guarantee that a business adheres to corporate social responsibilities.
With 44% of customers more likely to purchase from a company committed to sustainability, environmentally friendly initiatives also contribute to customer satisfaction.
How to start a green team?
Establishing a green team may sound easy, but there are a few steps to consider. After all, you want to form a team that’s passionate and effective in doing better for the environment.
Here are some tips for starting a green team.
Get your leadership aligned with the idea
Creating a green team can be an excellent kick-off, but you’ll need your leaders and stakeholders to get on board to gain support in your wider organisation.
To secure leadership buy-in, showing stakeholders the benefits of a green team for business sustainability is a great place to start.
Keep the team diverse and only invite passionate colleagues
Diversity is important, as a diverse group brings a range of ideas that can benefit your initiatives. For maximum success, we recommend inviting employees that are passionate about the environment and helping the business reach sustainability goals to join the green team.
Create an agenda for every meeting
Creating an agenda for each meeting makes sure that the time your green team spends together is valuable and contributes to your overall strategy. It also means team members know the goal for each meeting and gives them time to prepare any thoughts or ideas they want to share.
Assess where the business currently is and where it should go
Before putting environmental initiatives in place, reviewing where the business is and where you’d like to be is important. To help you navigate this, ask yourself questions including:
- What are we currently doing?
- What is working well within our social responsibility strategy?
- What have we already achieved?
- What are our goals?
- How do we want to be perceived as a company?
Prepare a plan and follow it
By understanding where you currently are and where you want to be, you can begin to prepare a plan for how you’ll get there.
While it's generally good to follow a plan, remember that changes in the business landscape are inevitable. Being flexible and carrying out regular reviews to determine how well your plan is working can help the green team consider whether anything needs changing or adapting to guarantee success.
Discuss and assign team members' roles
Each member of your green team will have a unique set of skills. Understanding each person’s strengths and interests will support you in assigning roles, but this should be a collective decision. To keep morale high, discuss the available roles and ask which each person would most like to fulfil.
Prioritise initiatives and goals
As the first few green team meetings take place, you’ll identify initiatives and goals for the company to focus on. Prioritising those that seem most important to your organisation is an excellent place to start. These could include reducing paper waste and promoting how electric vehicle drivers help the environment.
Start small and slowly add more
Starting a green team is exciting, not to mention rewarding. At first, you may want to put all your time and effort into achieving your ambitious goals, but it’s best to start small and slowly increase the teams’ efforts.
When you know what’s working well, you can slowly add more to your agenda to build out new environmental initiatives.
Encourage project ownership
As you identify initiatives and the goals you want to prioritise, empower the team to take ownership of certain projects. If someone is passionate about reducing waste, encourage them to focus on this and inspire them to achieve their vision.
Hold regular meetings and share your efforts with the wider business
Regular meetings with your green team will allow you to acknowledge your achievements, make necessary changes or adjustments to your activities, and add more goals to your plan.
As you mark achievements and small wins, don’t forget to share these with the wider business. Doing so could encourage and motivate more people to get on board.
Celebrate the team’s achievements
Finally, don’t forget to celebrate the team’s achievements, regardless of how large or small they may be. Celebrating achievements boosts teamwork, increases happiness, and enhances motivation – all of which are vital to the success of a green team.
Be ambitious and accept the occasional loss
Part of creating an internal working group to push forward environmental initiatives includes accepting when things don’t always go to plan. Remember, if things don’t pan out exactly as expected, the green team will have the chance to learn what could be done differently next time.
If you want to campaign for EV salary sacrifice as an employee benefit in your organisation, why not use our handy form to convince your company? We’ll send an email with all of the details to the relevant person in your organisation on your behalf, so completing the form is the only bit of work you need to do. Simple!