As we prepare to re-open the doors to our public and private schools, it’s time to start thinking about how, as cleaning professionals, we can offer guidance on cleaning facilities more effectively and efficiently, while making the school healthier for students and teachers.
This returns us back to the idea of Consultative Selling. Becoming an expert on green cleaning and putting this expertise to use with your school customers can be rewarding. The other thing to keep in mind, is that the benefits of green cleaning that relate to student health, learning, and absenteeism resonate with school administrators. So, if the opportunity presents itself, use your knowledge to educate (not sell) other key ‘influencers’ such as principles, superintendents, school board members, etc.
Here are some nuggets of information to keep in mind:
Green Cleaning is a process, not simply the use of green products.
Green Cleaning should not cost more, the process can actually save money.
The LEED standard for Existing Buildings includes a pre-requisite that a GREEN CLEANING POLICY be in place and offers 6 points/credits for implementing green cleaning. Out of those six points, 2 points are related to purchase of green products, the other 4 point are related to the process.
To understand the process of Green Cleaning, read YOUR EASY GUIDE TO GREEN , a 6 step guide on the process of going green.
An audit of existing cleaning products and practices can be an excellentÂ Consultative Selling Tool. A Green Cleaning Audit for schools is built around these 4-Action Pillars:
Pollution Prevention: In this category, source waste reduction, recycle and re-use programs are assessed. The goal is to create measurable reductions in waste and emissions.
Indoor Air Quality: Programs that address IAQ are important for the health of all building occupants. A specific emphasis for this section is to reduce asthma triggers through the use of alternative cleaning products, equipment, tools and processes.
Health and Wellness: Here we are looking for ways to reduce absenteeism, reduce the spread of illness / disease through education and specific cleaning methods.
Facility Maintenance: Green Cleaning is a process that clearly focus’s on prevention strategies. In this section, we look at the cleaning products and processes currently in place and start the processes of building a High Performance Cleaning Program.
A typical green cleaning audit depicts the current efforts being made to provide the occupants of the building with a healthy environment. It is important to conduct this audit because it creates an awareness and accountability to those responsible for that environment.
The audit will benefit the school because no matter how good the current efforts are, there is always room for improvement.