How to Be a Green Collared CEO or Business Owner
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How to Be a Green Collared CEO or Business Owner

Like Kermit the Frog once said; "It ain't easy being green!"

And while it may not be easy, it's important and worth your while. Especially if you're in a leadership role, because you have the ability to influence others behavior, making them more responsible and helping the environment.

One thing employees highly respect in a good CEO is the ability to lead by example. The do as I say, not as I do, method of leadership simply falls short. So, when trying to infect employees with enthusiasm for green living, a CEO should become the Guru of Green, the Sultan of Sustainability, and the Einstein of Environmentalism. Not only will others follow suit, but they will feel good knowing they work for a company that isn’t just about the bottom line. These are some suggestions environmentally conscious CEO’s may want to keep in mind when spreading the green revolution through the workplace.

  1. Make a charitable donation. This boosts your company's image, and usually gets you a tax break. By choosing a charity that helps the environment in the process, employees will realize that this is something their company cares about. A fun way to promote the cause and to improve team morale would be to host a fund raising event among the employees. Some good charities include carbon counter and Red Feather.
  2. Encourage a more casual dress code when possible. In colder weather, employees are more likely to don a comfy sweat and keep heating costs lower. They are also more likely to walk or bike to work if they don't have to worry about a fancy suit being wrinkled.
  3. Bike, carpool or drive a hybrid vehicle to work. Set the example, and develop alternatives to reduce emissions. Provide employees with a space to freshen up - maybe even a shower - so that they feel more comfortable walking to work. Watch how revitalized they become from the physical exercise. Speak to your local transit authority and find out if they have programs to introduce lowered transit passes to your employees.

  4. Ensure that employees have every opportunity to recycle.
  5. Encourage employees to utilize computer software rather than mass amounts of paper, wherever possible. You will save in supply costs and reduce unnecessary waste.
  6. Encourage employees to bring re-usable cups for their water, coffee or tea. Provide them with a place to wash their dishes. This cuts down on countless plastic or paper cups shaped like cones filling the garbage cans around the water cooler.
  7. Ask your employees! They are sure to be full of ideas on how the workplace can become greener. Your employees will appreciate being involved in the process, and feel better about their employer for respecting their input.

As the old adage goes, be the change you want to see in the world, and this holds especially true for anyone in a leadership position. Good luck instilling that green fever in your employees!

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