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What could you try this year to create positive change?

At a time when a lot of us have statistically given up our New Year’s resolutions (there’s even a day dedicated to ditching your resolution), the team at Allia have been thinking about ways to create positive change and stick to it in 2019.

Whether it’s for the environment, the benefit of the community or for our own health and wellbeing, here are some of the positive aims from Allia staff across our Future Business Centres.

Caroline, Managing Director Business Viability – For the new year, we’ve invested in reusable cups and bottles to help staff to stop using single use plastics. It’s important to us to encourage everyone at Allia to try and make greener choices for the benefit of the environment. In 2017 it was estimated that 1 million bottles were used every minute around the world – and we want to help reduce that number by making small, sustainable changes here at Allia.

Bethany, Marketing and Communications Officer – My positive aim for 2019 is to support independent coffee shops that have a more ethical and sustainable focus, especially those that work with women farmers and cooperatives to source their coffee. And I’ll be making sure I always bring a reusable cup to reduce my plastic consumption too!

Phil, Chief Operating Officer – I didn’t cycle much growing up, but I took it up about ten years ago and now enjoy my 7-mile commute to the Cambridge Future Business Centre. You don’t have to go straight from zero to an all-weather, long-distance lycra-clad bike lover, but start small and give it a go sometime. It’s good for the environment and for your health – and saves on petrol costs!

Sally, Brand, Marketing and Communications Manager – My positive aim for 2019 is to donate more food to my local foodbank to support those in need, both on a personal level donating at my local supermarket and at work, coordinating with colleagues to do regular drop offs. I’m also donating outgrown clothes to a local charity helping refugees in Calais.

Rachel, Head of HR – My aim this year is to increase the numbers of staff who take up our paid voluntary work day to benefit charities and give something back to our local community. I have also started doing some voluntary mentoring in my own time, and will be running a workshop for entrepreneurs who are part of our Allia Serious Impact programme in East London, on everything they need to consider and have in place when taking on their first employee.

Louise, Finance Administrator – I’ve been buying vintage and second-hand clothes for many years. My positive aim is to continue this in 2019, and in Cambridge we’re lucky to have lots of choice when it comes to charity and vintage shops. Thousands of gallons of water and a lot of chemicals go into making the clothes most of us wear, so buying vintage and second-hand can help to reduce your personal environmental footprint – and there’s nothing like finding a bargain!

Nick, Facilities Director – I’m going to be encouraging car sharing between our Allia Future Business Centres and travelling only when necessary in 2019. Talking to colleagues and looking for opportunities to travel together on the same day will help us cut down unnecessary carbon emissions.

Lucy, Marketing and Communications Officer – In 2019 I am trying to use more eco-friendly products. By using plant-based cleaning products and washing detergents, I aim to reduce my carbon footprint as a consumer. The bottles are made from 100% recycled materials and can even be refilled in certain shops – I go to Daily Bread in Cambridge. I also no longer buy bottled shampoo, and instead use ‘shampoo bars’ which are zero waste, cruelty free and made with natural ingredients. One bar provides the same amount of washes as three shampoo bottles!

Martin, Deputy CEO – My aim is to encourage all of us to think about staying healthy at work. Last year we began a regular ‘Walk at One’ at our Cambridge Future Business Centre, which encourages everyone who can to get out of the building for a 10 minute walk each day. You always return refreshed and having talked about something interesting with a colleague. For 2019 we’ll aim to build on that by encouraging more people to join in, as well as trying some micro-exercises at our desks and getting away from the screen more.

Daniel, Head of Origination – Last year I became a vegetarian and will continue this in 2019. Research shows that a plant-based diet has many nutritional benefits. Watching various documentaries has opened my eyes about the processes that go into the meat that ends up on our plates, and the environmental benefits of a vegetarian diet.

Will you be making any positive changes for the rest of 2019? Let us know on Twitter @AlliaLtd. Whether you join in with some of our aims or have your own to work towards – even the smallest change can help to create positive impact.