So, you work in HR.  An HR Professional. Living the dream.

But behind that super(wo)manly smile, you are fighting to keep head above soup laced with minimising your carbon emissions, pandemic requirements and PPE, remote work issues, pay demands, grievances and grudges not to mention the usual processes and recruitment challenges….Oh yes and May is energy month.  If you have been in the dark, read what this means here.

And then your EXCO hit you with GREEN HR..?! Really?  Well, sit back and breathe, the recipe to go green is much easier than you think and quite frankly, deliciously rewarding.  A little bit like that chocolate peanut butter banana smoothie after gym.

Stay with me while I take you through 4 short simple steps to becoming an HR Greenie.

  1. Doing MS Teams or Google Hangout meetings?  Well. You’ve got this.  You have just saved a ton of trees!!!!

    There are rules for making these meetings more rewarding and efficient.  Take it from me, a self-proclaimed GURU, yes, I have been doing these for years.  Mostly called SKYPE back in the days (remember?) since 2010…

    • Do not hide behind ‘my camera is not working, or I have bad reception’ without good reason.  Eyeball your co-workers and ensure that they do the same.  If you meet in the office, do you put a paper bag over your face?  NO!  You dress appropriately for the meeting, you look at each other, you greet each other, you SMILE at each other. DO IT. You need to be engaged and committed, otherwise why bother wasting everyone’s time by having the meeting if you are going to be cooking dinner and changing nappies at the same time or pick your kids up at school? 
    • Introduce each other, ensure everyone in the meeting is acknowledged and the reason why they are present.
    • Draw up an agenda for the meeting and stick to it. 
    • Stick to the timelines, take notes and park issues that cannot be solved immediately and need to be referred or escalated for follow up.  
    • Yes actually, just like a normal productive meeting.
  2. Use the Cloud.  It is a good thing.  Throw your server out of the building – by that I mean call a waste disposal company to collect it, of course. Including the ugly beige filing cabinets. We do not have more time here to explain. Google it. 
  3. Get some office plants. And by this I do not mean the plastic one you put in the foyer for your cigarette butts. UGGGHH!! Brains need oxygen to think and work. If you want zombies working for you, employ Alexa, she has no arms, never strikes, and can tell corny jokes plus has an amazing general knowledge. Mine even switches off my lights. 
  4. Invest in organisational happiness. Is this finally where we get to eat, you may wonder? I believe that, besides oxygen and a little (mostly forwards) movement, nourishment is key for a strong work force and profitability.  Nourish your people with knowledge (training), positive words (performance management) and a good (vegan) bagel now and then. We will be talking about this topic a lot more, so watch this space.

About the Author:

Leonie Pentz

Leonie Pentz, VP Sustainability & Managing Partner AIMS International South Africa