I would like to introduce you to Ann King-Musza, Strategic Partnership Manager for TerraCycle Inc. She has been instrumental in finding successful ways for the NAEFSS test salon (Jonathan Kane Salon & Spa) to divert waste from landfills. The study will be released before Earth Day 2014! Below are some questions we had for Ann.
1. Recycling Salon and Spa trash can be a pretty daunting task, can you tell us about some alternative ways to get rid of trash that isn’t picked up by local municipalities?
Sadly, municipal recycling in the US is still very limited - traditionally only accepting glass, paper, aluminum and plastics #1 and #2. Luckily there are great resources out there to collect and recycle absolutely any kind of personal care or beauty packaging. TerraCycle works with Garnier to offer a 100% free program that allows salons to collect most beauty product packaging regardless of brand! There are few limitations (no aerosols please) so check out www.terracycle.com/brigades to see the Beauty Brigade and other free recycling programs. All collection and (pre-paid) shipping happens through UPS so it couldn't be easier. Also check out www.earth911.org and www.1800recycling.com for more information about local recycling options,
2. Sometimes the biggest obstacle to achieving “Zero Waste” is figuring out how to separate it. Do you have any suggestions or have you heard about how others meeting this challenge?
Separation is definitely the hurdle to effective recycling. Some easy suggestions are using proper signage (TerraCycle provides free flyers and letters to our participants) to assure people put the right items in the right bins. Or borrow a trick from the marketing play book and use some 'gamification' - offer a small prize or just recognition for those who separate properly. Maybe a monthly leader board or a prize for all employees if the bins are accurately filled at the end of the month (maybe a pizza party for lunch etc).
3. What’s on the horizon for new offerings from TerraCycle?
TerraCycle is constantly working on new recycling programs and fun ways to get folks engaged in resource conservation. This year our big development was recycling cigarette butts. Next year it will be disposable diapers! We are also launching a new program that will allow local businesses to go to zero waste (for a small fee - all other TerraCycle programs are free.) Also look for TerraCycle CEO Tom Szaky's new book Outsmart Waste in January and hopefully a TerraCycle reality show in Fall 2014!
4. Aside from helping salon and spa owners reduce their impact on the environment through lessoning their trash disposal, are there any other incentives to recycling through TerraCycle?
TerraCycle makes recycling easy, fun and rewarding. For every item your salon collects we will donate 2 cents to a school or charity of your choice! It can be a local group or a national charity close to your heart – that’s up to you. We also offer amazing prizes ranging from free books to free products and much for offered to the collector themselves. In addition if your salon signs up TerraCycle will do a free local press release on your behalf. Helping you get free articles and new stories about your salon's go green efforts in your local newspapers, radio stations and TV programs!
5. I hear there is a promotion starting in November; can you tell us more about it?
We are glad you asked! As a special promotion to get people involved in our free recycling fundraisers (like you need more motivation, right?) for the months of November and December we are offering 100 bonus points (1 dollar extra) for EVERY single shipment you return to TerraCycle. Every shipment will also enter you into a sweepstake to win amazing TerraCycle prize packs! So what are you waiting for? Help the environment, raise money for your community, get free marketing and a chance to win free prizes all for free! Learn more or sign up today at www.terracycle.com/brigades.
Please remember! Zero Waste is our goal, one that takes commitment and employee engagement to achieve. NAEFSS is considering adding “Ask TerraCycle” to our Newsletter in order to answer some quick waste questions. I encourage ALL to send me your comments and business challenges, share your success and your failures. Remember nothing is broken unless it can’t be fixed! Thank you for your commitment to sustainability and improving our way of live through eco-friendly initiatives.
People contemplate the question “Is there life after death?” They hope that things will surely be better than the life they are living now. They squander day after day in a state of busy-ness and worry. So much so that they forget to live a “Life before death”
You are here. Be Present!
I once heard a teacher tell me that in the world of technology, we (anyone over the age of 35, or probably younger) are technology immigrants and our children are technology natives. “We” get a new piece of technology and sweat over trying to figure it out, all the while probably not using it to its full potential. We pour over manuals and look for tech support where ever we can find it. But just hand the piece of new technology over to children and they jump in happily, whizzing through the process of using it in all its glory.
Yesterday, when I was speaking at the MPI-CAC (Meeting Professionals International – Chicago Area Chapter) knowledge share event, I had an epiphany. The topic was Sustainability, and even though everyone in attendance new about the term, they really didn’t have a handle on what it meant. I also noticed that many worked for companies with sustainability as some part of their brand, but the message and actions didn’t trickle down past the executive offices. My epiphany is that maybe “We” are sustainability immigrants and our children are sustainability natives! The Environment/Planet part of the sustainability equation is already deeply engrained in their lives. They learn about it in schools, on cartoons and through their role models.
On the larger scale of business, sustainability is only adopted if it produces measurable benefits to the bottom line. The U.S. doesn’t mandate carbon reporting and the rules set by the EPA are often fought by big corporations fighting change. The only companies participating in the GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) are those who do business globally, because other countries restrict their business if they don’t.
I have seen and continue to see the sustainability movement thrive throughout all aspect of life, and I am convinced it will continue to grow. I just hope it doesn’t take another 20 years (when the natives grow into positions of power), before we bridge the gap between talking about sustainability and actually operating sustainably.
Since it is fall, I'll use football for my example:
Take football, the object of the game is to get the ball past the goal. In the game of life your goal is your dream, who or what you say you are or want to be.
In football you reach your goal when a receiver is passed the ball and runs fast to the goal. Or maybe the receiver catches the ball in the endzone. What makes it a game is the other team. In life the other team represents obstacles in life, challenges to overcome. What fun is football without the opposing team, what fun is life without the sense of accomplishment felt when challenges are overcome?
The game of life doesn’t have the same rules for everyone. We’re all different and we all place different challenges before ourselves. Maybe we feel the strongest sense of self when we overcome the biggest challenges.
Life gives us exactly what we need to be who we say we are. It is our choice whether or not to recognize the challenges as opportunities to be our personal best.
Go You! Touchdown!
Inspiration & Innovation: The birth of NAEFSS
I created the National Association of Eco-Friendly Salons & Spas because I felt inspired to do so. I thought…”How can I bring value to existing and future salons and spas of all shapes and sizes?” Going Green was my inspiration.
The first step was to design a model, specifically suited for the salon and spa industry. To do this I used firsthand knowledge of the industry, advice from a consultant in sustainable manufacturing, as well as knowledge gained from completing requirements for the accreditation of LEED-AP for Commercial Interiors.
The Salon & Spa Sustainability Model was the framework from which everything grew; from the website containing special member access, to newsletters and free eco-tips, ultimately leading to Salon and Spa Sustainability Certification.
Education never stops, I went on to receive and MBA in Sustainable Business, focused on Urban Planning and Sustainable Communities. Because “Sustainability” is a journey and not a destination, research is continual.
NAEFSS is not an “All or Nothing” association. My mission is to gently guide businesses and people in general to be their personal best. If doing one thing out of a hundred possibilities is all you can manage right now, then know it’s the right step and just take it. If going “All In” fits your personality, I’m here for you.
I would like to share with you my newest insights and inspirations. I’ve been working around the premise of the salon and spa industry doing the same thing it always has but in a greener way. But after listening to a Keynote Speech by Joel Makower, I’ve decided we need to challenge the salon and spa industry to do things differently by providing greener services. Now if that means designing haircuts that work well with styling products created organically or use little or no electrical appliances, then this may or may not be the solution.
I challenge you to innovate! Jim Hartzfeld, Managing Director of InterfaceRAISE, states that we have to stop protecting what we have and start inventing what we need. And I urge you to stay positive! I don’t believe in the end of the world, doing without or lack of any kind. I believe in the future of possibilities. I believe in the shear genius of the human mind and collective spirit. I call for us to stop using up finite resources, not because we’re doomed if we do but because it pays to expand our thoughts about what is needed to survive and thrive.
One last thought. We are creatives, destined for greatness. Let your mind run free…Innovate!