This isn’t your classic ‘new year, new me’ blog where you feel a surge of inspiration to make 2020 your year. It’s so much more than that.
Heading into any new year is an exciting time for any business, the fresh sense of optimism and opportunity is rife. Yet so many times the fire quickly burns out and those hopes and dreams fade into dust. To ensure that doesn’t happen, we’ve compiled a simple 10-point checklist that focuses on more than just the core elements of a business.
Checklist for your business in 2020
It’s difficult to see past the bare branches and the lifeless hedges at this time of the year. However, in just a few months the plants around your grounds will begin to flourish. By taking action now you will only help to transform the appearance of your business.
1. Think about your grounds maintenance situation; is there a plan-of-action in place or do you outsource this to a professional contractor?
Keeping the maintenance of your grounds in-house may seem logical at first, however consider how much time you and effort you could save by appointing a reliable contractor. This time and effort can be better focused elsewhere - in the areas that your talents lie.
2. Are you happy with the maintenance of your grounds?
If you’re unsure, take a walk around with a keen eye. This will allow you to make notes of any areas of improvement. Think about what your staff and visitors will see when they arrive, first impressions count and you must make them last.
3. Ask for an outside opinion on how you can improve your landscape.
Take advantage of our free site survey, this can also assist with us helping you establish improvement points for your maintenance.
Improving the environment in and around your office
How many times have you vowed to improve your own atmosphere and the collective office environment? It’s an honourable commitment, yet one that most find difficult to achieve. The three steps below provide an alternative approach as to how you can accomplish this.
4. Purchase plants for the building and look after them.
Yes, investing in office plants really does help enhance the office environment, including improving the air quality, which will provide you and your colleagues with additional levels of clean air and oxygen. Furthermore, sharing the responsibility of caring for the plants between co-workers will provide common ground amongst the variety of teams within the office, bringing them together. Just remember to choose your plants carefully, taking into consideration the sun light levels and air moisture. If your office barely has any natural sunshine, worry not – plant species such as Calathea and Spathiphyllum are much happier in the shade and easy to look after!
5. Consider how you can make the most of your outdoor landscape.
The harsh winters can make the outdoors very unappealing however, when spring arrives and the weather warms up (which is sooner than you think), do you have an outdoor area for employees to spend their break times in? We recently talked about increasing biodiversity around business parks and how much it can improve a person’s wellbeing, as well as natural habitats.
6. Understand the benefits of wildflower for commercial landscapes and discover how you are able to easily implement this within your landscape.
During the summer there was a rise of wildflower planting schemes within commercial landscapes and it’s not hard to see why. From low maintenance cost through to an attractive appearance, the benefits are highly desirable for all to see.
Establish an environmentally friendly plan
Heading into the next decade climate change is at the forefront of everyone’s minds, from businesses to individuals and retail parks to hospitals. Establishing an environmentally friendly plan isn’t as daunting as it may sound, we promise.
7. Is it possible to encourage staff to use public transport, car share or cycle to work?
We’re not saying be radical, sell your car this weekend and hitch a ride, just think about if there is any way you can encourage each other to think about how you commute. Even if it’s just to use public transport once a week, it’s that pro-active approach we should all take. If possible, introduce a cycle to work/car sharing scheme, or in-house bonuses for those actively making an effort – heck make a competition out of it then it can double up as a team bonding exercise.
8. Take the lead and introduce new, pro-active habits such as using a reusable coffee cup.
Thousands of us will head to our favourite barista in a morning on the way to the office. Thousands of us will then have the pleasure of enjoying a hot coffee, or tea, as they begin work. Sadly, thousands of us will then also bin the cup that we had this drink in. Recycling the cup is a start. However, one better would be to use your own reusable cup. Some coffee shops, such as Café Nero, also offer bonuses and discounts for using a reusable cup (meaning you would actually save yourself money!)
Other habits you could introduce would be to grow and look after a plant, as already mentioned this could be within a communal office or even at home. Already do this and wondering what else you can achieve? Try growing your own food. It’s possible (and relatively easy), trust us! You can grow many types of herbs all year round in the windowsill – mint will just take over if you let it! If you want to up your foodie game, try growing microgreens that are packed with vitamins and minerals. If you’re feeling brave, give lettuce and spinach a go. It can easily go from seed to harvest in about 6 weeks with just a bit of sunshine in your windowsill.
9. Where can you use biodegradable or eco-friendly products?
We recently delivered a selection of Christmas hampers, as a thank you to our loyal customers. To go the extra mile, we decided we would buy each individual item within the hamper, to ensure that all products were ethically sourced (fair-trade and organic) and, in some way, environmentally friendly, right down to the wrapping, which is compostable. Where can you switch to using biodegradable or eco-friendly products?
How to make a positive difference to the environment in 2020
For your checklist to really be effective, we recommend you start small. It’s easy to get over-excited about something and then halfway through just forget about it. Perhaps even just thinking a little bit more about all our actions and being more conscious about our choices is going to greatly impact our lifestyle and the planet. Do I really need to buy this item which has excessive packaging? Do I really need to have take-away food this often? Maybe I should try cooking something new for a change. Do I need to buy lunch every day? Maybe I’ll learn meal-prepping in 2020 and eat more healthily (although your colleagues may try and steal your food).
Try and see how it goes, who knows – you may be more influential than you think, and the rest of your office and colleagues will take after you!