Small Businesses Staff Greenest
Employees in small businesses are more likely to be taking steps to reduce their energy use than staff in larger organisations, according to energy company E.ON.
Research from E.ON found that the smaller the business, the more energy efficient the staff. It revealed that more than a third of workers in small firms have altered their behaviour to help tackle global warming, compared to less than a fifth of employees in big businesses.
Hugh Jones, solutions director at the Carbon Trust, said that straightforward steps such as switching off lights, not turning up heating unnecessarily and maintaining equipment properly should all be priorities for small businesses in the current climate.
“With oil prices hitting new highs, businesses have even more to gain by securing the support of their staff and engaging them in their efforts to save energy and operate in a sustainable manner,” he said.
The survey also revealed that small businesses are more likely to get staff to adopt environmentally–friendly measures by giving them incentives, than by using enforced procedures – just 30% of employees said they would be motivated by enforced procedures, while 61% would be motivated by financial rewards. Jim Macdonald, E.ON commercial director pointed out;
“Small firms should not be put off from using financial incentives to encourage staff to be greener. Simple ideas could include putting some of the financial savings made from improved energy efficiency towards a staff Christmas party, or rewarding ‘green’ employees with lunch vouchers or discounts in the staff canteen.
“However, businesses seeking to go green must also look at cutting the red tape their employees face in implementing energy–efficient work practices.Our research shows that it is a feeling of needing to ask permission to make positive changes which prevents workers from taking the necessary steps.”
For more information on how businesses can cut their energy use, visit the Carbon Trust website