Quiz: How Eco-Friendly Are You at Work?
Do you care about our planet? If you’re like most of us, you’ve probably answered, “Yes!” Well, the good news is that there are plenty of ways you can go green at work — even if you’re not the manager. Take this fun quiz to find out how eco-friendly you are and get some practical tips for going greener.
How do you get to work?
A. I always take my car.
B. I use public transport and walk the last couple of blocks.
C. I telecommute whenever I can.
Do you use Styrofoam cups and plastic utensils?
A. Yes, of course; it’s convenient.
B. I bring my own mug when I remember.
C. I never use disposable cups, plates, or utensils for my food and beverages.
Do you use energy saver settings on your computer?
A. I don’t think so; my computer is always on.
B. No, my computer goes to sleep after an hour.
C. Yes, my computer goes to sleep whenever possible.
How often do you leave computers, printers, speakers, and other hardware on standby?
A. Always — I’m not even sure where the off button is.
B. I leave them on standby during the day; then I turn them off when I leave the office.
C. I switch devices off when I’m not using them.
How do you read, share, and save documents?
A. I print them out.
B. When they’re important and I want easy access to them, I print them out.
C. I’m 100 percent paperless.
Scoring your answers
For every A answer, give yourself 1 point; for every B answer, give yourself 2 points, and for every C answer, give yourself 3 points.
Interpreting the results
If you have between 5 and 7 points, educate yourself: You’re never too old to learn something new, and that’s a good thing, because if you really care about the planet, you’re best advised to educate yourself about going green. For example, did you know that putting your computer in sleep mode is better for it and uses less energy than leaving it on? Or that turning your computer on and off again won’t damage it? Or that you can use zip drives and file sharing to store and share documents so you don’t have to print them out? Spend some time researching ways you can be greener at work; you’ll soon find it’s easier than you think.
If you have between 8 and 11 points, you’re on the right track: Great! You already have some eco-friendly habits like taking public transport and turning devices off at the end of the day. However, there’s still room for improvement. Consider keeping a mug at work, using energy saver settings on your computer, switching all devices off when not in use, and going completely paperless. The good news is that it’s just a question of ramping up behaviors you already have, so it shouldn’t take too much effort.
If you have between 12 and 15 points, it’s time you educate others: Awesome! You’re officially eco-friendly at work! Now, if you want to make even more of a difference, you could have a conversation with your manager about making your workplace greener, for example by using refillable cartridges, establishing a recycling program, and educating your co-workers about green practices. You could even suggest supporting a charity that advocates for the environment such as Nature Conservancy Canada, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society or a local organization.
Going green at work doesn’t have to be a big hassle, so long as you know which steps to take. Just remember: They don’t have to be gigantic leaps, since every little step in the right direction helps you become eco-friendlier.