Local businesses take action for a more sustainable Merton


Sustainable Merton Business Champion Geeks Ltd. is on a journey to become more sustainable, and inspiring others to get on board!


'Green Geeks Club' member, and one of our newest Community Champions, Jo tells us more about the changes the local software development company has made to reduce, reuse and recycle more to tackle waste in the workplace.


How Green Geeks Club came about?


Geeks Ltd and its passionate team have always been dedicated to, not only delivering high quality software applications, but also ensuring they are a positive influence within their local community. The Geeks Charity Club was founded in 2015 and since then the club has had a strong vision and set goals for employees to engage in charitable activities.


In January 2018, a subset of Geeks Charity Club was formed by the members who wanted to focus their efforts on environmental factors, forming Green Geeks Club.


Deciding that the first step towards change, starts at home, Green Geeks Club to focus their attentions in 2018 on decided on the goal to try and reduce as much single-use plastic consumption as possible.


Key 2018 Achievements


1. Removal of the majority of single-use plastic including:

  • Water bottles which had previously been provided for every meeting replaced by water jugs with fresh herbs and fruit

  • Individually wrapped sweets & biscuits replaced by fruit

  • Removal of single-use plastic cups for water and replaced with glasses

  • Removal of individual ice cream pots for staff

  • Biros replaced with eco pens


2. Change of waste provider to First Mile, which introduced food recycling and tracks waste consumption giving measurable and achievable goals


3. Recycling awareness campaigns


4. Green Geeks Club members took part in Plastic Free July and communicated their journey and tips with the rest of the company


5. Replacing Nespresso coffee capsules with sustainable coffee beans



Where do we go next?


Green Geeks Club were very fortunate to have been supported by Geeks’ directors in these changes and have been able to make key changes within the first year and are proud to see how much less waste is generated. Once these initial changes have been made, the question became what to look into next…


In planning the goal for 2019, it was decided that the next step should be to look outside the company and how Geeks can work with other businesses to learn from their tips in a move towards sustainability and share our experiences. From this goal Green Geeks Club have partnered up with Sustainable Merton and Merton Chamber of Commerce to see how we can work in partnership. The first step with this is hosting a Business Networking Breakfast on 20th May to share tips, information and best practice on how to make businesses more sustainable.


Alongside this we are still looking to see what we can to help our sustainability by investigating our energy suppliers and introduce more green plants into our office, what environmental travel initiatives we can introduce and how we can reduce energy consumption. Green Geeks Club believe we have made some great strides however we aware there is still a lot more we can do and look forward to working more in the community to make Merton the most environmentally active borough in London.


3 top tips on how to make your business more sustainable


1. Focus on quick wins - It can be very overwhelming when you start looking into ways to become more sustainable, we learnt that starting off at looking at easy changes and focusing on these helped us gain some momentum. We spent a lot of time at the beginning focussing on large changes that would prove to be unachievable. Just starting with one thing and then moving onto the next means you will achieve more!


2. Don’t underestimate how quickly people can adapt - It can be scary to make changes (particularly when you are taking away ice cream and sweets!) but we found that people adapted surprisingly quickly to the removal of items and it was actually easier than we had assumed to make changes. Looking back we delayed some changes from the worry of how people would react but everyone was receptive.


3. Just talking, makes a difference - one of the things that surprised us the most was just by talking about these things and talking about changes you are making, motivates others and you start to see them making a difference as well.


Jo

Green Geeks Club member

& Sustainable Merton Community Champion

Join the green conversation at our seminar and networking breakfast with Geeks and Merton Chamber of Commerce - find out more and book your place

Sustainable Merton

Registered Charity No. 1156639

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020 3417 0476

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