By Lori Somers Community and Municipal Relations Representative Waste Management
Have you established a recycling program at your business? Whether you are starting from scratch or want to enhance your existing sustainability practices, establishing recycling programs is easy and may help reduce your monthly bill for waste collection services since recycling service fees are lower than waste service fees. In addition, more and more consumers are paying attention to where they shop and being environmentally friendly can create a positive impact on your company’s image. Companies that “do good” do well in the marketplace.
Key Areas for Success:
The biggest key in a successful program isn’t the process, or a set of recycling containers… it’s the people. You may find that sustainable practices such as recycling are important to your employees. Engage and educate your employees and you will see your recycling program flourish. Or better yet, start a Green Team. For ideas and inspiration visit: recycleoftenrecycleright.com or recyclingatwork.org.
- Organize a kick-off event with employees.
- Put signs up around the office with images of what is recyclable, tips to reduce waste, and why it is important to recycle. Waste Management has PDF documents you can download to make signs, posters and container decals.
- Provide recycling program training to employees and janitorial staff. Define how will it work and how they can participate.
- Send kick-off emails with program information.
- Organize lunchtime roundtable discussions for program suggestions.
- Survey employees periodically on how the program is working, or how to improve it.
- Hold an office recycling challenge.
- Email recycling reminders, stories and successes.
- Update employees on what materials are accepted for recycling.
- Let employees know how their efforts are making a difference.
- Identify and reward “recycling champions” in your organization.
- Set goals, i.e. increase recycling rates, and provide rewards for achieving goals.