Greenscaping | Green Team Building Ideas That Rock

Greenscape your workspace.

Now that you’re carpooling to work, want to greenscape your workspace? Here’s what you do.

Spread some seed around your desk, use of all-natural corn and gluten fertilizers and watch it grow. We kid! Wed kid! Going green isn’t just about what you do at home, but growing a lush garden around your rolly chair would be a little…challenging.

You don’t need to be a manager to bring your eco-values to work and implement change. If you want your team to bond AND save the planet, we have a few suggestions to help you get started.

Green your space. If you can, start with good furniture, good lighting, and good air:

  • Furniture can be manufactured from recycled materials as well as recyclable. Look for retailers that have implemented the Cradle-to-Cradle protocol.
  • Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescents.
  • Ensure good ventilation and low-VOC paints and materials.
  • If you’re feeling ambitious, check out terrarium desks.

Is your office already setup? That’s ok. Don’t throw everything you already have in place, away. That’s just going to generate more waste.

It’s time for a green team building idea – the Green-off Competition!

It’s easy and even virtual employees can participate.

Kickoff: Provide your team with a list of ways to greenscape their workspace without throwing any items away (or the actual items, if you have the means):
strategies for team building

  • Bring in a mug, glass, bowl, set of utensils and any relevant items that add personality to an individual’s desk and help reduce waste.
  • Add an LED desk lamp to each workspace.
  • Decorate with plant(s), solar-powered gadgets and eco-friendly office supplies.
  • Find unique ways to upcycle waste.

Teams can work together or as individuals. You can provide themes (e.g. DC comics), set specific goals (e.g. every desk must have a reusable mug) or just see who gets the highest score. Mostly, they should have fun!

Enlist an unbiased panel of judges to score each teams’ workspace on a scale of 1-10.

Green Week: Assign a designated area to each team (including their desk and any abutting shared space). Unless there is an exemption made, the following items must be turned off each night:

  • Computer towers / laptops
  • Computer monitors
  • Office, hallway, bathroom, kitchen and shared space lights
  • Copy machines
  • Fax machines
  • Coffee makers
  • Microwaves
  • Misc. Kitchen gadgets
  • Bathroom lights

Each night, assign a “monitor” or team of monitors to inspect assigned areas. For every non-exempt item that has not been powered down, the responsible team loses a point. Keep things encouraging, but adding in these bonuses:

  • Each plant that lives throughout the week = +1 bonus point
  • Each upcycled item in the workspace = +1 bonus point

And the winner is… The green-off should culminate in a special event like a green lunch (see green team building idea ) where the winners are announced. Reward this team with something fun and meaningful, perhaps a farm share!

Samantha McDuffee

Team Contributor


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