Kylie oversees virtual events and social media at Bonusly and loves talking about company culture, inclusion in the workplace, and employee recognition. She loves a good cup of coffee and making memories with her husband and daughters.
Earth Day made its debut in 1970 when Americans decided it was time to take action and bring light to their growing concerns about climate change. Since then, generations of concerned people have demanded social and policy changes all year long to protect the green spaces we love.
As the workforce has transformed and gotten younger, concerned employees have also demanded changes in their workplace. In fact, a recent survey indicated that 71% of Gen Z employees would refuse to work for a company they felt was not doing enough to deal with climate change—and their leaders agree that climate change is serious. Another survey by Deloitte indicates that 89% of executives agree there is a global climate emergency.
One way to help the earth is by promoting a remote and hybrid workplace. Check out our complete guide to hybrid work strategy to get started. 🌳
So what does this mean for the modern workplace? In an already competitive hiring landscape, employers must consider the benefits of implementing sustainable practices into their workplace culture and the costs associated with losing employees who are motivated to do more.
In recognition of Earth Day 2022, there are many steps you can take to share in your employees’ concern and commitment to battling climate change. Although changes in company culture can’t happen overnight, there are tangible things you can do now to show your employees that you care, and are willing to do whatever it takes to move the needle on sustainability in the workplace.
To keep the celebrations going, see the list of best workplace holidays by month with guides to help you plan in advance in our recommended calendar.
How to celebrate Earth Day at work
1. Volunteer as a team 🙌
Volunteering as a team is beneficial for employee engagement and morale, motivation and productivity, and so much more—and there are many things you and your team can do together to build a more sustainable community.
- Plant trees together in partnership with an organization like the Arbor Day Foundation. This is a great choice for hybrid and remote teams because employees will feel more connected while also boosting employee awareness and activism around global reforestation efforts.
- Host a community cleanup along busy roadways, in community parks, or along riverbanks or creekbeds where trash tends to accumulate.
- Grow a community garden. You can work with your team to build a garden of your own or help tend to one that already exists where you live.
2. Introduce composting to your office space ♻️
Another great opportunity to help support sustainability is by hosting a composting class for your team and, if you work in an office, introducing the practice there. Composting is a natural way to provide nutrients to the soil and also reduces methane gas and the volume of waste in landfills.
Composting classes will train your employees on topics such as the importance of composting, acceptable and unacceptable materials for composting, and proper compost collection including the use of compostable bags.
3. Offer remote work 🚗
It’s no surprise that remote work is growing in popularity—and that’s happening for more reasons than one. In addition to the flexibility and improved work-life balance that remote work offers your employees, it also helps reduce the number of harmful emissions released into the air and excess fossil fuel use caused by long, daily commutes. The commute to work accounts for more than 98% of an employee’s work-related carbon footprint—so just imagine the impact you could make by allowing your employees to work remotely even part of the time!
4. Encourage greener internet practices 👩💻
Even small changes in your work habits can make a difference. Did you know that an average Google search uses as much energy as illuminating a 60-watt lightbulb for 17 seconds?!
While the energy required for one search may not seem like much, when you consider that Google processes about 63,000 searches every second, or about 5.2 billion each day, that translates to a lot of energy used. Consider talking to your team about using environmentally friendly search engines (yes, they exist!) like Ecosia or OceanHero.
5. Partner with vendors that have sustainable business practices 💚
Have you ever inquired about your business partners’ sustainability practices?
Oftentimes, when people inquire about Bonusly, it’s because they want to improve employee engagement, embrace peer-to-peer employee recognition, and streamline manual rewards and program administration. That’s what we do, after all!
The thing is, sustainable solutions can come as a surprise. Bonusly’s platform supports high-level business goals and related outcomes, like employee morale, while also diverting plastic waste from landfills. Since the global Bonusly Reward Catalog provides digital gift cards, not physical ones, companies can readily offer digital rewards and donation and cash-out options alongside creative company swag items produced on-demand instead of in bulk.
For Natalie Breece, Senior Vice President of People at thredUP, an online consignment and thrift store, every vendor relationship presents an opportunity for environmental savings:
As a mission-driven company, thredUP looks for vendors that help us in our goals of doing good for the planet and our people. Bonusly is a great tool that has contributed positively to thredUP’s company culture, especially in our distribution centers.
Next time you evaluate vendors for your business or renew contracts with your current software and service providers, ask about their green practices. You might be pleasantly surprised by what you learn!
Planting the seeds of sustainability 🌱
While a shift in culture can’t happen overnight, these are just a few easy steps you can take to begin building a more sustainable workplace. Whether you’re with a large company or on a small team, everyone can do something to make an impact on the effects of climate change.
Do you have any other ideas for implementing sustainable practices at work? Share them with us! And while we have you, check out this latest and greatest resource below.
It’s been two years since the start of the pandemic that has changed the way we all live and work, especially when it comes to team building.
One of the most obvious and, very likely, most permanent changes has been the shift toward remote and hybrid working. A recent study of North America’s largest 50,000 employers found that remote opportunities leaped from under 4% of all high-paying jobs before the pandemic to about 9% at the end of 2020, and to more than 15% today. That same study predicts that 25% of all professional jobs in North America will be remote by the end of 2022 😲.
Remote work: the highs and lows
There are so many benefits to remote work—increased talent pools for employers, improved work-life balance, and a positive impact on the environment—just to name a few. But with remote work also comes new challenges in the workforce, especially for HR and people leaders.
Get your recording (and go on a virtual safari!): creative ways to engage remote teams
At the beginning of the pandemic, most of us can remember the scheduled Zoom happy hour—that Friday afternoon on-screen get-together where we all shared drinks and glimpses into our personal worlds. But as the newness of this remote reality settled in, Zoom fatigue became a thing, and we found ourselves weary of yet another virtual conversation at the end of our week.
Despite the positive impacts remote work had in our lives, many began to miss the close, personal connection we built with coworkers during our time in the office. A 2021 Buffer study found that 17% of remote workers were experiencing loneliness and 11% even said they felt decreased motivation.
It became clear to team leaders that culture and team building is still essential to our employees’ happiness, even in this new virtual world. After all, remote team building comes with similar benefits to in-person team building, including:
- Increased morale and camaraderie among team members
- Improved motivation and overall productivity
- Better cross-team collaboration
- And more…
6 unique remote team building ideas
What can we do to improve team camaraderie and connectedness while we’re miles apart and behind a screen?
Believe it or not, there are lots of things you can do with your team to have fun together and build a strong bond while being 100% remote.
At Bonusly, we’ve done our fair share of virtual team-building experiences, and have had a lot of good fortune in finding some super interesting and unique activities. We’ve collected some of these in a list for you!
Watch our recent webinar on creative ways to engage remote teams
1. Virtual safaris 🦒
Yes, you read that right! Marco Experiences can take your team on a wild safari ride, where you can meet giraffes, rhinos, flamingos, and more—all from the comfort of your home office. Marco offers additional unique group and team-building activities—including mixology classes, comedy shows, and private concerts.
Ps: we just hosted a webinar with Welcome and Marco that featured said safari! 🦁
2. Remote cooking classes
Another company we LOVE is Rockoly. The marketing team at Bonusly recently partnered with Chef Emily for a fun and interactive cooking class. Rockoly makes it super easy to arrange this—even sending the ingredients directly to your employees’ homes! We learned how to make a pizza from scratch, which opened up space for lots of great conversation. Pineapple on pizza anyone? 🍍
3. Virtual escape rooms
Escape rooms were at the height of popularity when the pandemic suddenly locked us out of those nail-biting rooms full of clues and riddles. Organizations like The Escape Game have pivoted their offerings to virtual escape rooms with all the benefits of teamwork and puzzle-solving that in-person escape rooms give you.
4. Themed trivia
What better way to spark some friendly competition among your team than with a challenging round of trivia? In February, Bonusly employees got together with TeamBuilding in recognition of Black History Month for trivia focused on Black figures in pop culture, science, engineering, sports, history, and more. Trivia is a fun, no-pressure way to get to know each other’s skills and interests outside of work.
5. Donut chats
At Bonusly, we’ve partnered with Donut to provide the opportunity for our team to meet new people within the company each week with Donut chats. These short introductions allow people from different parts of Bonusly to meet people they may not work closely with on a regular basis.
6. Regular peer-to-peer recognition
Peer recognition is when employees are empowered to express appreciation for their coworkers, including their peers, managers, and direct reports. We’re partial to Bonusly 😏 but there are many ways you can incorporate a culture of peer recognition into your company’s remote work structure.
Team building has always been important for happy, productive teams and will continue to be—even as more and more professionals move toward remote work. Luckily, there are so many versatile options for people leaders who want to create these opportunities for their remote teams.
Do you have any team-building activities that you love not listed here? Share with us in the comments below! 💚