Zircon is Going Green in the Workplace

June 10th, 2011 by Sarah Green Leave a reply »

As you may be aware Zircon as a remote working organisation are passionate about being ‘green’. As an organisation we actively try to minimise our impact upon the environment and seek to encourage our clients to work in more ‘green’ ways. As a result, Dr Amanda Potter and colleagues from Zircon were recently commended as a sustainable business by Croydon Business Awards (see previous blog “Zircon Commended for the Best Business for Sustainability” Award 2011, April 29th 2011).

In our continued effort to learn more about being ‘green’, I attended the “Value of Ecopsychology” event, hosted by the BPS Going Green Working Group. The Going Green Working Group is part of the Division of Occupational Psychology and seeks to raise awareness of the important contribution that Occupational Psychology can have in promoting green behaviours at work.

When considering the phrase “Ecopsychology” one may fear that it is a vague and intangible concept which is hard to grasp, however an interactive presentation delivered by Thurstan Crockett, Head of Sustainability & Environmental Policy at Brighton & Hove City Council, soon demonstrated the important reality of “Ecopsychology”.

The key learning points from the presentation are described below;

  • Natural Environments – are often beneficial and restorative for our health. As an understanding of this Brighton has purpose built green areas and allotments to provide an escape to nature.  As natural environments can be restorative, it is important to incorporate these beneficial aspects into the work place, hopefully encouraging individuals to appreciate their value. 


  •  Changing Behaviour at the Organisational Level Much of the psychological research regarding ‘being green’ at work is focussed upon addressing individual belief and values. However, in order to influence individuals at an organisational level we need to address the individual at work and address the organisation as a whole new theories need to be applied/developed which address the organisation as a whole.


  • Unbroken Chains of Communication – In order for behaviour to change there needs to be unbroken chains of communication across the whole organisation. If this does not happen, especially at Senior Levels beliefs are unlikely to be consistent and behavioural change is unlikely to occur.

There is a lot more research to be done in order to determine exactly how to encourage consistent ‘green’ ways of working across whole organisations. However, actively encouraging employees and clients to adopt certain behaviours in order to benefit the environment is a great starting point. This is certainly something we endeavour to do at Zircon. 

If you are interested in joining the Going Green Working Group or contributing your ideas to the research projects they undertake then please follow the link below:


  • The psychologist. (2011). Going Green in the work place, 24(4).
  • “Value of Eco Psychology”, Going Green Working Group Event 2011, presented by Thurstan Crockett.
  • “Psychology of sustainability in the workplace”, Going Green Working Group Publish Report  www.bps.org.uk/goinggreen

Written by: Melissa Tyson, Occupational Psychologist

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