Making Work Greener and Fairer
Think Globally, Act LocallyThe saying "Think globally, act locally" applies more and more in today's society and while we are all looking around our homes with an eye to reducing our costs and getting greener and give Fairtrade products ago what's happening in our workplaces? How can we be part of bringing our values to work? Here are 7 great ways to thinking global with our local acts at work:

1. Choose to go Fair Trade in the kitchen with tea and coffee - ask your supplier for the Fair Trade products and if they don't have them get them from one that does - you'll find that the major supermarkets stock Fairtrade Certified tea, coffee and chocolate products in their organic section.

2. Set the lights in the office to after hours movement activation so they still provide their safety requirements but save on energy and money for the business. Choose to be part of Earth Hour and show your support for it.

3. Make sure the paper products used are from recycled paper and are disposed in recycling bins. Reduce costs as well by having people be more sensible about their use of paper - print drafts with 2 pages per sheet, use double sided printing, use the black and white option rather than the colour option for drafts. Have a discussion with the staff about their ideas of how to use less paper and recycle more.

4. Have the cleaners use environmentally responsible and friendly cleaning products instead of harsh chemically based products. It is a great business building option for cleaning businesses to have environmentally responsible methods.

5. Use Fairtrade certified promotional and marketing products such as bags, garments, and packaging. This is a win-win for your business to show customers and the community that you're business is sincere in being active in the community and making a positive difference.

6. Setup Workplace Collections for your workplace to make recycling easier. Click here to find out how to register your business. If you're a small business why not band together with some of your small business neighbours to share the collection box?

7. Recycle printing cartridges by dropping them into a ‘Cartridges 4 Planet Ark'. The recycled cartridges end up in the steel fridge, the eWood in a park bench, the plastic in a ruler and the ink in a roller ball pen. While about half of the laser cartridges end up back with their original maker to be remanufactured back into cartridges. Click here to find your local recycling services and drop off locations.

If you are finding resistance in the workplace to creating positive change look to making it easier, cheaper and attractive to customers - show ways where it saves money, increase customer appreciation and loyalty and keep it simple. Often showing comparable examples of where it has successfully worked before (precedents - government and bureaucratic agencies particularly like this) helps a great deal. Start with the easy wins and get them happening first and work from there.

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