Office etiquette is the set of expectations for appropriate employee behavior in the workplace. But it’s more than just good manners and courtesy. Thoughtful office etiquette can also have a positive impact on the environment and save energy by directing the proper use of office equipment and facilities — from the lights and the printer to the kitchen and the bathroom.
Changing everyday behavior requires some reinforcement of the new habits, though. One simple way to help your staff make necessary changes is by hanging a few easy-to-make signs that offer simple tips for how to save energy and operate more sustainably.
Even small changes in behavior can lead to improved energy efficiency in the workplace and help meet environmental objectives. You’ll need to approach change in the way that works best for your business, but there are four main steps that you may want to take:
Energy-saving office etiquette works best when it fits your workplace culture. Although management can lead the establishment of workplace norms, making it a team effort will encourage change to happen faster and will make new energy-saving behavior truly stick.
Avoid using a negative, nagging tone. A positive approach with rewards works better. And don’t underestimate the power of humor to get attention and engage cooperation. Funny office etiquette signs help build company culture and energy-saving habits.
The following energy conservation signs help establish and reinforce energy-saving office etiquette. Posting these signs around the workplace can help set expectations for your team and remind them that their individual efforts add up to big savings.
Implementing the habits below can cut energy consumption and extend the life of your office equipment. Including daily actions that are simple for your employees to follow will make energy savings more achievable.
You may want to include any or all of the following on your energy saving signs:
Download the printable energy conservation sign for your workplace as a PDF
Saving water also saves energy. Plumbing problems, whether a small faucet drip or a major leak, can mean wasted energy used to process, move and heat that lost water. And when your employees keep an eye out for water waste, they can also help prevent costly repair bills.
You may want to include any or all of the following on your water conservation signs:
Download the printable water conservation sign for your workplace as a PDF
Environmental sustainability signs are meant to establish and reinforce daily habits that affect the environment and the energy use of your business.
As you think about what’s right for your business, you may want to include some of the following energy-saving office etiquette tips:
Download the printable sustainability sign for your workplace as a PDF
You can save considerable energy in bathrooms, depending on the type and size of your business..
Bathroom etiquette reminders can go a long way. As you think about what’s right for your business, consider some of the following tips:
Download the printable bathroom etiquette sign for your workplace as a PDF
Kitchens are centers of high energy use in many workplaces. Invest in ENERGY STAR® major appliances and high-use small appliances, like an energy-efficient coffee maker.
Kitchens can be a source of major energy waste. A few energy conservation signs with kitchen etiquette suggestions can remind employees of best practices. You might want to add the following tips to the kitchen etiquette signs you tailor to your business:
Download the printable kitchen etiquette sign for your workplace as a PDF
Refrigerators, even those with a good ENERGY STAR® rating, are the biggest users of electricity in most kitchens. The following energy-saving tips for office and commercial refrigerators can reduce energy costs and improve energy efficiency:
Download the printable refrigerator sign for your workplace as a PDF
Office etiquette can be a powerful tool when organizations want to save energy or increase energy efficiency in the workplace. When combined with careful shopping for energy-efficient office equipment, how people behave in your workplace can cut hidden energy waste. Something as simple as asking people to turn off the lights when they leave the room saves energy with little effort, even if you’re already using energy-efficient commercial lighting.
For the minimal effort it takes to post office etiquette signs, you could:
And, even better, you may already qualify for small-business energy tax credits.
Your employees’ everyday behavior is the living expression of your business’s culture. Its values. Reinforcing what you believe in as a company with office etiquette signs is a visual reminder of what you stand for. Conserving energy, environmental stewardship, sustainability — these are values worth promoting.
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