Sustainability – Getting Started

Evangeline Basson | 06 July 2023

When approaching sustainability as a company or an individual, it can feel completely daunting.

But if you talk to your colleagues, the chances are, they’re already taking actions within their own teams and day-to-day roles and it’s likely that you are too!

It can be easy to overlook the small things, but the tasks you are already doing daily can and do build up to substantial change.

After getting the conversations about sustainability started, you need to get a team together, ideally made up of the colleagues who are interested in these conversations.

In OBI, all our teams work together, and our people are the lifeblood of the company. In the same way, our Green Team consists of people from each department to make sure we are all on board and advocating for behaviour change company wide.

As an Office Manager, I quite like lists, and this also happens to be a great place to start with your new Green Team.

Make a list of everything you’ve done so far, and you will be full of ideas on where to go next. But if you do find yourselves stuck, there are plenty of tools to your disposal.

OBI were one of the first 50 companies to sign up to Zellar: a great platform to use for making your lists and tracking your progress. They provide actions to check off as you go, and they will support you along the way.

We start each of our Green Team meetings by running through our list on Zellar and seeing how well we have done that month.

There are some other tools out there too. It’s worth looking at the wide range of UNSDG’s as each business will be different and there is not a one size fits all solution to sustainability.

Tailor your plan, keep it relevant, but keep it simple. In my own role I noticed a need for some basic changes, such as eliminating single use office products, so I bought recycled paper, reusable coffee cups, re-fillable soap tabs and so on.

These small actions soon snowballed into larger ones, such as moving the entire business onto a cloud-based server.

After your first Green Team meeting, you are going to need to get the rest of the business on board.

Without education it will be almost impossible to drive behaviour change. Your Green Team will help with the social aspect here but change also takes individual effort and understanding.

In OBI, to give individuals the how and the why, we all attended Carbon Literacy Training, kindly delivered by our friends at Reform Radio as a part of their Mind and Planet course. It helped dispel a lot of myths and inspired us to stay accountable to one another, as our training required us to make both group and individual pledges.

OBI take pride in saying that we are now 100% Carbon literacy Certified!

We are only a couple of years into our sustainability journey, and we’ve already done so much. We don’t expect to be perfect, but we keep the conversation going, the ideas flowing and focus on a continuing education.

I encourage you to do the same.

Good luck!

Related articles

All OBI News
OBI makes new hire in Capital Markets team

OBI makes new hire in Capital Markets team

10 May 2024
View article
Chorley’s regeneration helps Orbit attract major companies to new office development

Chorley’s regeneration helps Orbit attract major companies to new office development

08 May 2024
View article
Colour psychology: what is it?

Colour psychology: what is it?

07 May 2024
View article