For the third straight year, BlackBerry is the Carpool Month Champion. What is the secret of the amazing 3-time Champion? Jen McLaughlin, Global Environment Manager of BlackBerry answers a couple of questions and shares some of their secret to coming out on top.
- As an individual, what drives you to champion initiatives that support a healthy and sustainable workplace at BlackBerry?
- I feel a personal responsibility to ensure BlackBerry employees have sustainability programs available to them so they can help to reduce the environmental impact of our operations and also so they can incorporate these programs into their personal life. We have a large organization so if even half of the employees make 1 small change at work and in their personal life, Waterloo Region overall would benefit.
- BlackBerry has won the TravelWise Carpool Month Engagement Award for the third year in a row! How do you do it?
- I don’t want to say that I nag, but I do chase people down in the parking lot and hallway if I hear them talking about carpooling. I treat the month like a project, I have a spreadsheet to track progress and follow up with employees to offer technical assistance with gotravelwise. I also make use of our survey results to help prompt employees who have an interest in carpooling. I think it’s important to break down the thinking that carpooling is a group of coworkers driving to and from work together. Carpooling can have so many different forms, so it doesn’t have to be all or nothing!
- What’s your favourite part about promoting sustainable transportation at your workplace?
- I love engaging with our employees and also other companies that are participating in providing sustainable transportation programs to their employees. I’m a sucker for anything EV related, which works out well at BlackBerry as our employees lean towards technology based solutions.
- We know that you often carpool yourself. Can you describe how that started and what your experience has been like?
- Like a lot of working parents I struggle with the balance between school drop off/pickup and carpooling. I can’t carpool every day so I look for opportunities to carpool to meetings or special events.
- Are there any other creative projects you are working on to support sustainable transportation at BlackBerry?
- I developed a BlackBerry Global Commuting Action Plan last year and it outlines the projects that will help to reduce our drive alone rate by 15% by 2020. This year I’m focusing on implementing a process for employees who are traveling longer distances for work (Mississauga, Ottawa) to find carpool matches of other employees who are also traveling. I’m also looking into providing bike tool kits so employees can make small repairs at work if needed. With ION coming soon we are looking for how we can support providing as much information as possible to our employees in hopes that more employees will opt to take rapid transit to work.
Thank you to all those who participated in Carpool Month! Keep on Carpooling and we look forward to having you again next year. Feel free to email us your Carpool Month feedback – TravelWise@regionofwaterloo.ca.