The Green movement has been gaining momentum in the business world; more companies seem to be concerned with their responsibility to protect the environment. Vault.com recently released its first digital-only book depicting various Green company programs.

Won Kim, Vault editor and author of “Vault Guide to Green Programs,” says the guidebook features companies that embrace the eco-friendly movement. The goal of the book is to “track talent companies need to become more socially responsible.”

Vault is also dedicated to going Green. They hope to display their commitment to the environment by releasing this guide online, not in printed form. The portable document format (PDF) reflects Vault’s hope to become more “Green smart,” according to Kim.

“As a growing number of Vault’s elite career-oriented audience embraces environmental responsibility as a determining issue in choosing among employer options, we want to walk the talk,” says Erik Sorenson, Vault CEO. “In addition to providing valuable information about target employers, we want to publish in a similarly responsible fashion. And we’ll work to do more of that in the future.”

Featured companies have shown excitement about Green issues, as well as an incentive to work toward social responsibility. Representatives from human resources, corporate communications and corporate responsibility teams answered questions relating to their environmental programs and ideas. Questions covered topics such as: what kinds of Green programs, which employees help to implement the plans, how the ideas are communicated to employees and clients, if the facilities at the business have been eco-friendly certified and how the results illustrate the effectiveness of the environmental programs.

The guide covers many different industries from airlines to retail stores to law firms, according to Kim. Some businesses include Apple, Boeing, Burt’s Bees, Northwest Airlines, Random House, Morrison & Forester law firm, Starbucks, Staples and General Electric.

Kim says it was interesting to see that future employees and college students are providing a strong emphasis toward environmentalism. Companies seem to be realizing that they need to become more eco-friendly in order to gain the top talent’s attention — current candidates prefer to work for businesses that display a concern for global awareness.   

Rivalry Rising
Beware of rising competition among co-workers in the workplace. Forty-six percent of senior executives, according to a survey by OfficeTeam, a staffing service that questioned 150 executives, say that employees are currently more competitive with each other in comparison to 10 years ago. Twenty-four percent of executives believe there is no change in employee rivalry, while 23 percent of respondents say the aggression among co-workers is somewhat less.

“In an uncertain economy, people grow more concerned about job security and proving their worth to employers,” says Dave Willmer, executive director of OfficeTeam. “This pressure to perform may result in rivalries between employees.”

OfficeTeam recognizes common workplace competitors, including solutions to keep the competition from going too far:

• The sprinter: this worker battles to finish projects, but occasionally misses the details. Congratulate the employee on his or her eagerness, but convince him or her to avoid cutting corners.
• The weight lifter: this employee sees accomplishments in terms of quantity; he or she may work on more projects than can be finished properly by deadline. Suggest giving other co-workers some of the workload.

• The gymnast: this worker points toward perfection and prefers finishing projects alone. You might need to encourage him or her to focus more on team goals.

• The pole-vaulter: this employee will take on the toughest assignments; no project is too high.  Avoid allowing this worker to tackle every difficult task.

• The saboteur: this type of athlete is part of every sport; they are pulled out of games for bad sportsmanship. The ruthless worker hurts others to get ahead. Concentrate on encouraging the worker to focus on joining forces with co-workers.

“A bit of healthy competition among staff can increase motivation and productivity, but, just as in sports, the overall results of the team are what count. Too much intramural competition creates tension and stands in the way of collaboration,” adds Willmer.

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