Will customers want sustainability at the heart of your next corporate event? Well, this study from Handshake, which surveyed employees, found a significant trend toward eco-friendly business practices.
It’s always good to get ahead of the competition; there is no better way to do that than by embracing the environment.
This guide will outline five ways to plan more sustainable events to impress your customers, employees, and investors.
1. Eco-Friendly Material
There is a lot to organize for a corporate event, and you’ll order plenty of items before the big day. So one step you can take is to choose the most eco-friendly options when sourcing supplies.
Plastic is a common material in catering supplies, so try looking for items made from recycled material instead. You can find recycled plastic or opt for something like aluminum.
Alternatively, choose reusable glassware, plates, and cutlery instead of disposable ones to help cut down on waste.
It’s common to hand out freebies or swag bags at corporate events. So you can make this trend more eco-friendly by choosing compostable freebies.
You could also partner with environmental charities and get them involved in handing out swag bags that raise awareness for their cause.
Recycled Event Programs
Another regular feature of events is the program handout or corporate brochure.
So you can go the extra mile for sustainable event planning. Check that all printouts are made with recycled material, and add recycle bins at the event so that guests know where to dispose of them before they leave.
Don’t forget to consider eco-friendly ways of decorating your event. That might mean eco-friendly material, LED lighting, or upcycled products.
2. Energy-Efficient Technology
There is plenty of technology that will help you cut your costs and offer event sustainability. Here are some ideas for you to try.
You’ll need lighting for your displays, decorations, and stage lighting. So, where possible, switch to LED. That will reduce your energy use for the event. Alternatively, you could opt for solar-powered lighting.
Energy Efficient Audio and Visual Equipment
If you need to invest in new audio, projectors, or screens, shop for a more energy-efficient model. The latest technology will help reduce your electricity demand, making it a cheaper and more sustainable option for future events.
Solar-Powered Phone Chargers
Event attendees always need their phones, but a full-day event can often leave many people with a drained cell battery.
However, some events offer a charging station, which is a welcome idea. However, if you want to ensure that service is sustainable, opt for a solar-powered charging station.
Movement Sensors for Restrooms
You can add movement sensors to restrooms to switch off the lights when they are unoccupied. It’s easy to do and will help reduce energy use in an event with many attendees.
3. Offer a Sustainable Food Menu
You can support the environment by making wise choices about your food. And when catering for events, careful planning will make your food menu more eco-friendly. Here are some ideas.
Sourcing food locally means you aren’t using thousands of air miles to get food to an event. It’s a sustainable way of catering to large crowds, and it also means you are supporting the local economy.
Organic food may be pricier, but it’s far more sustainable because it guarantees the food isn’t sprayed with pesticides. Plus, you’ll impress your event attendees by offering an organic menu.
Vegan food is more sustainable than meat, as it doesn’t take as much energy to produce and emits less carbon into the atmosphere.
There are many vegan products on the market now, including meatless burgers that taste nearly identical to the real thing so that you can see a varied menu for your guests.
Offer a Buffet
Food waste is a real issue. But you can help make a difference by providing a buffet for your guests instead of a sit-down meal. That way, attendees will only consume what they want and are less likely to leave uneaten food on the tables.
4. Go Paperless
It’s easy to produce lots of printed material for an event. But imagine what that means in terms of recycling all that paper! Consider making your next event entirely paperless for a more sustainable option.
For example, you can use an app for booking so that people can scan QR codes from their phone on arrival instead of a paper ticket.
You can add screens around your event with the itinerary instead of supplying a paper program. You could use an app or website to publish the day’s schedule.
If you intend to use the event to promote your business, consider using a dedicated website address instead of a brochure. Offer an incentive (like a competition) for people to sign up.
5. Champion Green Transportation
Getting people to and from an event can mean plenty of road pollution. In some instances, it can even mean thousands of air miles. So ask yourself whether there are ways you can offer green transportation options for your event.
Here are some ideas for you to try. You could provide a carbon offsetting scheme for any air or road miles people travel to get to your event. Or you could offer group transportation to the event using electric vehicles.
If people pay to attend your event, how about offering a discount if people travel using more environmentally sustainable ways, such as taking a train instead of driving to the event by car?
Or provide an incentive such as free parking for anyone arriving in an electric vehicle.
Planning Sustainable Events
We all need to do our bit to help the environment. And the good news is that there are easy and inventive ways to plan sustainable events without compromising on the overall experience.
Book a ticket to this year’s expo (our 10th anniversary) for inspiration and ideas for environmentally conscious events. You can do that right now by heading to our events booking page.