5 Simple Ways to Run a More Sustainable Business in 2019

Whether you’re concerned about saving the planet or saving a buck, these are five ways your company can operate more sustainably in 2019:

1. Kut Back on the Coffee

Look, we know office life isn’t really bearable without your morning, mid-day, and afternoon brew. So, don’t be ridiculous. We’re not suggesting you totally get rid of coffee, just that you reconsider your coffee habits. The invention of the Keurig and K Cups was like the nectar of gods being available right in your office break room. But, man! Those tiny little pods are expensive and fill up the trash fast. Here’s THREE life hacks about K Cups:

  1. They’re recyclable, so do the world a favor and put them in the bin.
  2. Use the reusable pods. Bulk coffee (hello, Folgers!) helps reign in the ridiculous cost of K Cups.
  3. You should know that the reusable pods take about 75% of coffee that K Cups do, so—if your office insists on keeping the plastic K cups around—you can open yourself a K Cup, fill up the reusable pod and put the remaining coffee grounds in a sealed plastic container in the fridge. (Think of it as a UFGO bargain—use four, get one free.)

2. Be (a)Ware

Is your fridge stocked with water bottles so all the execs can have a refreshing cool down after their long, hard deliberations at the table? Or maybe your break room is loaded with styrofoam cups for all that coffee you need to stay alive. Do yourself a favor—buy some dish-ware. Not only is dish-ware hella classy, but it also helps you cut back on waste. Want more details on exactly how much you’ll be saving? Check out this study by the City of Portland.

3. Do the Electric

If you’re still paying bills using paper and post, you’re behind the times, and it could be costing you money. Make sure you’re signed up for paperless post and online billing. This will save you money on your office supplies—from envelopes, address labels, and stamps—and time for your employees. (Trust us, paying the bills and having to lick those nasty glue strips on the back of the envelopes are NOT among your secretary’s favorite duties.) Plus, if you didn’t know, some companies will actually charge you upwards of $3 per pay period to send a paper bill. Still not convinced? Forbes thinks it’s a good idea.

4. Eat (and) Clean

You know what they say, “Happy employee, happy company.” Okay, we don’t know if anyone actually says that, but they should. There are two things that could be killing (figuratively and literally) your employees.

First, cut the crap. And by crap we mean the non-nutritious junk food you serve at company meetings. Replace your donuts and cookies with a bowl of nuts, some GORP, or citrus fruits. Looking for something sweeter? Try dark chocolate—at least 80% cocoa.

Second, save the citrus. Maybe you serve citrus fruits at your company meetings (like we literally just suggested), or maybe you know Karen eats an orange for lunch every single day and Kathy ALWAYS has a lemon in her tea. Ask your employees to put their citrus fruit rinds in a company compost bin. Eventually, you’ll collect enough to make your own natural cleaning solution that smells great, cleans well, and doesn’t pollute your office air with toxic chemicals.

5. Give

If your company ever over-produces, don’t be afraid to donate. Maybe you’re a book store and you have some books that aren’t exactly flying off the shelves. We guarantee there will be someone in your community who appreciates the availability of a donated book. Maybe you’re a printing company, and you misprinted a few of your latest sweatshirt designs. Come winter, you could be keeping someone very cozy who otherwise would’ve been cold. (And, yes, all this donating could help your bottomline come tax season.)