Here are a few ideas for New Year's Resolutions that don't require a trip to the gym or giving up chocolate. Repeat after me...I resolve to:
- Set up a Green Team for my organization’s meetings and events. That's right--I don’t have to do it all alone.
- Have recycling stations at every meeting and measure the amount of waste diverted from the landfill. I will let key stakeholders what has been accomplished.
- Order seafood only from sustainable fisheries. No more farmed salmon for my guests.
- Include green clauses in all of my contracts with venues, hotels, caterers and transportation companies.
- Hold virtual meetings when I don’t really need to travel to accomplish the same task.
- Look for ways to hold face-to-face meetings that will keep my participants healthier e.g. serve fresh and local food, networking time outdoors, or schedule time for exercise.
- Not serve any food on disposable service ware.
- Join an organization such as the Green Meeting Industry Council (GMIC) or attend a conference to learn more about sustainable practices from colleagues.
- Choose a venue close to hotels, restaurants and entertainment so participants can walk instead of take shuttles.
- Ask caterers to serve beverages in bulk instead of individually packaged such water, juices and even soft drinks--like iced tea and lemonade in pitchers for a refreshing/inexpensive afternoon break.
- Thank the housekeeper for not replacing my towels and sheets everyday when I travel.
- Mentor someone just starting out in green meetings.
- Donate all the leftover food to a food bank.
- Ask all my vendors for their environmental policies.
- Look for destinations that already have green vendors and venues in place to make my job easier.
- Not print the date on my signage so it can be reused for the next event.
- Always ask for fair-trade coffee.
- Keep track of the financial savings for all of the green practices and become a hero in my boss’ eyes.
...and you didn't even need to change your shoes.