Can caring for the environment also be good for business?

This post is from Gabriel Toscana who is our COO Nearshore Division / Sustainability Senior Global Advisor based in Bogotá, Colombia.

Imagine meeting with your CEO and explaining to him or her that your business needs to invest more effort into environmentally-conscious activities. Your suggestions may include reducing the carbon footprint, changing building standards, increasing “green” activities for employees, boosting your corporate social responsibility marketing and so forth.

How do you think your CEO would react? Would your CEO perhaps appear disinterested that you want to discuss “green” measures when business is tough and more focus should be put on the bottom line?

What if instead you phrased your proposal slightly differently?  For example, you could say to the CEO, “I have a few ideas for ways we can reduce operating costs, improve employee satisfaction, while also reducing our company’s environmental impact.”  The reaction you receive may be a little different.

This is how we approach Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) here at Teleperformance.  We try to find ways to help our business while also doing something positive for the planet.  It is not simply a matter of using company time and resources for “tree hugging,” it goes well beyond that.

Our LEED-certified buildings are a great example of this approach. While building a new contact center according to LEED standards initially costs more, once you have made the initial investment, the ongoing costs to maintain the building are lower.  Clients also love seeing environmentally conscious contact center sites with features such as rainwater recycling and state of the art air conditioning systems.

Beyond client satisfaction, LEED-certified workplaces also improve employee satisfaction.  In our annual employee survey we found our teams that work in LEED-certified call centers cite this feature as one of the things they love most about working at Teleperformance.

This is important because if the team loves their work environment, they will deliver better service to the customers.  The customer is in turn happier and the team performs better for the client and our business.  This exactly the sort of message the CEO prefers to hear.


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