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Create a 'bike-to-work' culture in your company

Jonno Leonard - Sunday, December 11, 2016

Sounds simple, right? But how to approach it and what are the benefits of a 'bike-to-work' culture? Read on, for answers to your questions, and easy how-to's.....

What would be some of the key reasons to get more team members biking to work? Here's a quick hit-list:

- Save everyone some money. Cars cost, to buy, run, maintain, fuel and park. Bikes, not so much.

- Get everyone there on time. Traffic woes are the cornerstone of the late-to-work posse. And with valid reason. Traffic sucks, and in Auckland, ours doesn't look like improving any time soon. Bike trips generally take the same time, every time.

- Get the team energised. A brisk whizz on a bike in the morning gets the endorphins flowing. Its hard to be grumpy on a bike. Energised people are alert and more productive.

- Create a shared activity for staff bonding. Bike riders are a natural team culture. Sharing tips, swapping stories, organising weekend rides. Give people something in common and stronger bonds will form.

- Plus you get big 'greenie points' with staff and customers alike!

So you get that its a good idea, and you probably have some benefits of your own to add to that list. So how to do it?

Glad you asked......

1. Make some space to put them. Bikes don't take up much room, but a barrier to use could be where staff leave them. If you don't have a spare storeroom, look at neighbouring businesses and see what you can find in under-used space. Anywhere dry and secure will do.

2. Incentivise it. Once the culture is going, it will power itself. But help it along with a perhaps a loan to buy a bike, a morning tea for the bike riders, a fun points system for who can ride in most often with a new helmet for the winner, etc.

3. Create shared bike experiences. Organise a weekend ride, invite families, do an activity you can bike to, like a picnic.

4. Remember some staff may be intimidated by biking, and perhaps haven't done it for years. Re-introduce them to it, get a bike shop to come and demonstrate some modern gear (Think Electric Bikes are happy to come to you with demo bikes for staff to try). 

5. Have facilities for changing / showering. It's not expensive to add a small shower/change room, and it could double up for gym-goers and nights-out-straight-from-work! Of course if you are e-biking to work, sweat is optional...

6. Have company bikes. A great way to get staff around to local meetings (and look cool with your clients when you rock up on-time by bike), and perfect for getting staff into biking if they are reluctant to buy their own (yet).

7. Think location. if you are moving offices, look for somewhere easily accessible by bike. With the development in cycle paths in Auckland, is it even beneficial to move the business close to a cycleway to make it easy for everyone to bike in?

8. Set goals. Whether you own the business or you are the inspiration behind getting the team onto bikes, set some achievable objectives like '80% of the team bike to work at least twice a week', so you can see you are making headway in getting everyone involved.

Free bike consult and demo: Just call me, Jonno Leonard, on 021 548 344, and I would be delighted to come and discuss ways in which we can help you make your workplace more bike-friendly. We can bring demo bikes for the team to try, and help you get your bike culture started or sorted!

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