Sometimes It’s Easy Being Green

With apologies to Kermit the Frog, I learned recently how to make my job easier by being green.

Each year, I produce the Chamber’s popular Legislative Directory by collecting, editing and assembling biographical information for all 150 state legislators. The collection process usually goes something like this:

  1. Send form letters and questionnaires via snail mail to every legislator
  2. Get 30% of the materials back from legislators before contacting their assistants to receive the remaining 70%
  3. Spend a week deciphering handwriting and converting the paper questionnaires into the appropriate format for publication

Enter the digital world. Abandoning the formality of printed envelopes and 44-cent stamps, I e-mailed the necessary documents directly to those who can really get things done in Indiana politics – the legislative assistants. In two days’ time my response rate was through the roof and the savings in time, paper, printing and other costs is substantial. This experience has encouraged me to “green” the marketing approach for this publication as well – likely to result in even more savings.

I have always been more an advocate for “going efficient” than “going green,” but in sharing my example and hearing from others, I’ve learned that environmental friendliness and efficiency often go hand-in-hand.

What examples do you have of environmental responsibility saving you time and/or money in the workplace?