Saturday, June 7, 2008

gentle reminders

I've seen this idea several times, and have always forgotten to mention it. Most email programs allow you to attach a permanent signature - why not use this for some info that goes beyond your name, job title, and phone number?

After all, a signature, as defined by, is "A distinctive mark, characteristic, or sound indicating identity" - don't you want your signature to say something about who you are, and what is important to you?

My personal email has a link to my blog...hopefully people may see it, click out of idle curiosity, and begin thinking about some things they hadn't before.

I've just added a signature to my work email (where I don't feel a blog link is appropriate) that says "Please consider the environment before printing this email." I totally copied this verbatim from somebody who sent it to me...sorry!

Burbanmom also suggests using your signature to give a "tip of the month" - she even gives step by step instructions for the technologically challenged on how to add a signature in outlook. If you use gmail, click on "settings" in the upper right corner, then the first tab says "general" - there's a box there that says "signature" - type it in, click "save changes" at the bottom, and you're good to go.

It took me about fifteen seconds to add this to my signature, and no ongoing maintenance required. Plus it's free. I like being able to do something good without spending money. So what if only two people ever decide not to print because of it? That's two less sheets of paper that we need to cut down a tree for, spend resources making, transporting, and later recycling.

More importantly, this can serve as one more reminder filtering into the subconsciousness of everyone I email with on a professional basis that we need to be aware of how we use resources. And these days, we can use as many of these reminders as we can get!


Heather @ SGF said...

I have one of my favorite quotes in my signature:

Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.-- Henry David Thoreau

I don't know if it helps everyone else, but it's a wonderful reminder to me every time I see it.

arduous said...

You know I keep forgetting to do this ... it's a good idea. Hmmm ... now I have to brainstorm a good gentle reminder!

I like Green Bean's, hers is reminding people to eat local which is kinda her signature issue. Maybe mine should be related to consumerism....