News Article
May 29, 2012

Sustainable Cultures: Creating Greener Workplaces for All

In making workplaces more sustainable, building technologies are not enough: A great deal depends on how people who work in the buildings behave. Johnson Controls Global Workplace Innovation and the Institute for Building Efficiency worked with the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design at the Royal College of Art in London to study what makes an environmentally aware organization.

The study found wide differences in what people think sustainability in the workplace should mean. On the other hand, it found no clear differences in how the different generations in the workplace valued or perceived sustainability. The study did identify four basic workplace cultures in terms of attitudes toward sustainability, its costs, and who should bear them. The four cultures are:

  • Pragmatists who believe only initiatives that cost little or nothing to employees or the company can be viable.
  • Libertarians who see sustainability as a company issue that should not impose costs on employees.
  • Housekeepers who believe the company should not bear the cost and expect employees to make changes and carry the burden.
  • Campaigners who believe the company and employees should take responsibility for sustainability and that each must take on some costs.

By understanding these cultures, managers can build on employees’ interests, values and expertise to create policies that are relevant, connected and meaningful to people’s roles.

What is your sustainability culture in the workplace?
Complete our survey and find out if you are a Campaigner, a Libetarian, a Pragmastist or a Housekeeper in the workplace.

 May 2012



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