October 6, 2008

A beautiful story about wasps, honey and how to be good to the environment

It's not easy finding great corporate environmentally-friendly initiatives that make an engaging story.  I fell in love with this inspiring ad from Herman Miller - manufacturer of office furniture and equipment....

"At Hermann Miller, we've managed to take our company philosophy and bottle it.

In 1995, we moved into the Greenhouse, our new, environmentally friendly manufacturing and office facility in Holland, Michigan. One day, we noticed large colonies of angry paper wasps had decided to make the exterior of our building their home. But we weren't about to reach for the pesticides. Our solution? Bees. Six-hundred thousand of them, housed in 12 beehives on the Greenhouse grounds. Before long, the bees had persuaded the wasps to move elsewhere. And our new friends cross-pollinated the surrounding fields, giving us spectacular wildflowers. We also had another favorable result:  Honey. And lots of it. So we began harvesting and bottling about 5,000 pounds of Greenhouse Honey a year as gifts for our guests. And while the honey may only come in a 4-once bottle, we believe the story behind it speaks volumes. To us, the honey exemplifies our commitment to the environment, to those who live in it, and to those who will inherit it. Angry wasps included. If you'd like to learn more about what we're doing for a better world around you, visit hermanmiller.com/environment."

Wow... the power of storytelling at its best. Not only an inspiring story but a real-case example of how companies can make small contributions with big impact on creating a better world.

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