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Business Operations

Here are 35 ways to go green...

July 13, 2011
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For those of you who are looking to green up your business, but aren’t looking to install new equipment or eco-friendly features, we are here to help. After all, some of you have already done everything you can, or, you simply are financially exhausted. The following tips will not only make your business more green, but they could also save you some green at the same time. By scouring the Internet and asking other business operators, and in honor of our 35th anniversary, we have procured 35 things you can do that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.

1. Make sure all lights are turned off when a room is not in use. Put up signs above light switches reminding others to do so, too.

2. Pay your bills online and save stamps, time, money and paper.

3. Have a place where workers can store coffee mugs and cups to cut down on paper and disposable containers.

4. Check all of your faucets and hoses to make sure there are no leaks.

5. Join www.freecycle.org. It’s a free online resource for people giving away things at no cost.

6. Use a dry erase board instead of pieces of paper to post notices.

7. Install energy saving and/or compact fluorescent light bulbs.

8. Use a “smart” power strip that automatically turns off when not in use.

9. Support other businesses that are green. (Your coffee supplier? Your chemical supplier?)

10. Buy office, bathroom, kitchen and other supplies in bulk.

11. Check for and fix any drafty windows and doors.

12. Set your computer to “sleep” or to power off after a certain amount of time instead of using a screensaver.

13. Buy some plants. They not only create a nice environment, but they help to absorb airborne pollutants.

14. Switch to eFax which allows you to receive faxes via email.

15. Make sure you have recycling containers for your customers and for your employees to use.

16. Stop receiving junk mail. Visit www.catalogchoice.org and sign up to be taken off of catalog, credit card, flier and circular distribution lists.

17. Insulate your water heater.

18. Use rain barrels to collect water and then use that water on your landscaping, flowers, etc.

19. Use rechargeable batteries.

20. Buy a water filter and then buy reusable water bottles for your employees. Instill a no “bottled water” policy.

21. Clean out air filters regularly or buy a permanent air filter if you use an air conditioner.

22. Offer direct deposit paychecks for your employees.

23. Receive statements and do all of your banking online.

24. Clean off, dust and vacuum your refrigerator coils.

25. Consider starting up a community garden for you and your employees. Place vegetables and fruits in a common area for the taking.

26. Install a programmable thermostat.

27. Spread used coffee grounds onto your property grounds: It makes for good topsoil.

28. Cut down on printing costs. Only print when necessary. Use a smaller font and decrease the margins and try and print using both sides of the paper. Also eliminate any text not needed, such as an entire web address or lines or graphics that are not needed on the printout.

29. Sweep up your floor instead of using a vacuum.

30. Leave grass clippings on the lawn as fertilizer.

31. Use refillable ink cartridges.

32. Instead of having business cards on hand for customers, only give one away when they ask for one.

33. If you have a TV in your waiting area, turn it off when not in use. Also, consider using a radio instead.

34. Lower the temperature of your water heater.

35. Got weeds on your property? Spot-treat and kill each one with household vinegar.

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