While “green” teams engage employees, cultivate creativity and new ideas, support sustainability goals, and produce meaningful results, they also may struggle with identity and direction, limited results, and frustrated members, according to a report from AltaTerra Research.
The report, “Green Teams and Value: Engaging Employees in Meeting Sustainability Goals,” focuses on the value and return on investment (ROI) that green teams can help to deliver. Researchers identified six general categories of green team activity and business contribution, and organized these activity categories into a framework based on scope and value.
The six categories are Environmental Awareness and Behaviors, Infrastructure Improvements, Infrastructure Use Programs, Product and Service Ideation, Product and Service Piloting, and Stakeholder Engagement. Researchers say these voluntary activities augment and do not replace established day-to-day business functions in the organization, such as facilities management, product development, or training.
The report also describes key program success factors including bidirectional communication, effective decision-making processes, organizational connectivity, maintaining enthusiasm, and measuring success.
It also reveals how leading businesses are organizing around these key capabilities to create support structures for green team programs, and offers recommendations for action by green teams and leaders at functional and executive levels. Among the companies interviewed and highlighted in the report are: eBay, EMC, Genentech, Lockheed Martin, and Palm (recently acquired by HP).