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Employees - What can we do?
Create a "Green Team" in your workplace
Find like minded people with your workplace and come together as a "Green Team" to share ways to make your workplace more sustainable. See below for useful information in setting up your Green Team.
If you are in a very small workforce, or you don't have job security, consider joining a Climate Action group outside of your workforce for support in your goals.
Let Management and Leadership Know That Your Care
This is an important piece of the jigsaw as businesses need to understand that the Irish workforce is becoming more climate-conscious, just like all across the world.
Remember! As an employee you hold the power to directly influence the work place you spend your time in, the end products & services produced, the actions of colleagues & management, and the fortunes of local community groups and initiatives.
Once you care, show others and try to influence them (in a respectful way) to care too. We are all at different stages of our sustainability journeys, some at the very beginning, some well established, and many of us somewhere in the middle. Open communication and acceptance of difference are important if we are to bring everyone along on the journey together.
Avail of Training
Take advantage of any training your employer may provide to put yourself into a position of understanding and doing when it comes to Climate Action.
Make a request for training from your employer too.
Don't reinvent the wheel
There is a lot of advice and tips available now on ways to make your workplace more sustainable. Tap into these resources when arriving at your target areas.
For Beginners, Sole trades & SME's:
Green Team Quick Start Guide - Published by Cultivating Capital, is a great starting point. Their article How To Start A Great Green Team For your Business is also very useful.
For larger companies:
Project Drawdown- Climate Solutions AT Work - A how-to guide for employees looking to make every job a climate job. This guide is very comprehensive and gives a foundation for many of the areas large companies will need to tackle in achieving Net Zero.
PlanetGroups- This UK and Germany based Not For Profit & NGO may be useful in helping to set up an employee sustainability group in your workplace.
Be Specific In Your Demands
This is an important one. If you want measureable action, then you need to clearly state your concrete position and what you want to achieve. This leaves less room for avoidance.
Remember the power is in your hands!
Believe it or not, many employees are in a strong position to influence change and climate action in their workplace. When you think about it, every business in the world relies on legions of employees to create their products, services and PROFITS.
It is employees who can have most influence over their employers actions, through reasonable and measured climate action demands. This employee pressure can actually prompt changes in business practices much quicker than regulation and government intervention, because you have direct access to the decision makers. Show your employer the benefits for the environment, the benefits for employees and the benefits for their business too. Make it a Win:Win for everyone whenever you can.
Through this employee pressure, we can push our employers to reshape the choices available to customers. We can push them to make sustainable products and services the convenient and price competitive option for customers and ourselves. Government intervention and regulation usually come much further down the road- it is a motivated few who lead the way and push for change to happen first. The rest of society, and government, eventually catch up with them.
So your climate actions in the workplace are not insignificant. They matter greatly. We just need to get more employees feeling their power to influence change too!
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