Sustainability initiatives are most successful when the full team has awareness and willingness to see them through. Long-term success depends on investing in your team, sharing education and awareness to motivate team members to be ambassadors and advocates for the mission.
It is important to have at least one primary point of contact overseeing the sustainability program and liaising with different departments so that goals are shared.
Establishing an internal employee-led Green Team can create a support network and ongoing accountability. This helps evolve your business while offering leadership opportunities to members of your team.
Integrating methods for collective decision-making and tools to receive innovative suggestions from anyone on the team can be wonderful ways to keep sustainability the focus and alignment on top of mind. This also offers an opportunity for the team to be a part of the process and have a sense of ownership over the program as well.
Sustainability initiatives are only as successful as the team behind them! Proper training is critical to the long-term and successful implementation of any program. Create the necessary materials, signage, and orientation curriculum as well as reporting and evaluation frameworks to facilitate this training.
Some key components to include in training materials:
Share WHY your business is taking this step towards responsible consumption to value the health of our communities and shared blue planet
Outline any specific action items employees need to perform
Include any relevant scripts or template language for communicating these initiatives to guests
Your team is the primary interface between your business and your guests; equip your team to be ambassadors for the program and to facilitate guest education efforts
Include relevant training materials in orientation programs to ensure that all new-hires are brought up to speed and know how to execute the program. Adopt a train-the-trainer model to empower internal champions and team leads to step into a leadership role and pass down the knowledge to their teams and new hires for the longevity of the program.
Working With Vendors + Suppliers:
When searching for sustainable alternative products, start by asking your existing vendors and suppliers what options they have available. From a procurement perspective, it is often more streamlined to continue working with a consistent supplier rather than engaging with a separate supplier for each item.
Once alternative products are identified, work with your vendors and suppliers (and Oceanic Global) to make sure that their sustainable options meet the Blue List requirements. Beware of ‘Greenwashing’!
If sustainable options are not available, Oceanic Global can connect you with vetted sustainable suppliers featured in Oceanic Global’s Blue List of solution-providers.
If your current vendor does not have a suitable alternative, collaborate with them to create a new product or line that meets the Blue List requirements. Create a ripple effect of change: if your vendor sources new sustainable offerings, this will catalyze scalable behavior change and help shift the market towards responsible consumption.
Events + Third-Party Events:
Develop custom sustainable event guidelines to engage your vendors, or third-party event producers around your sustainability mission. Always work with locally available solution-providers where possible.
Guidelines should include, but are not limited to:
- Share your sustainability goals, and share why this is important to your community
- Best practices for foodservice operations
- Catering needs
- Waste management plan