Harm, known for the satirical tv programme 'This was the news', was hired for the gathering on 28 June due to his work as 'anti-plastic ambassador' for TV channel National Geographic.
The presenter declared himself an explicit supporter of a circular economy, where recycling is the standard wherever possible. He talked in great detail about the need to take care of climate change and showed striking examples of sustainable entrepreneurship, like a farm fully operating on solar energy and clothing made of 100% reused fabrics.
"VodafoneZiggo also welcomes circular business practices", says Marloes Vierkant of Societal Value, responsible for inviting Harm on behalf of VodafoneZiggo. "Recycling raw materials, using products longer or giving them a second life are topics we feel very strongly about. VodafoneZiggo wants to contribute towards the transition into a circular economy. This workshop was therefore perfectly timed."
Ajax shirts from reused plastic
The colleagues that attended the workshop split into groups to discuss ideas to reduce the 'plastic mountain'. These brainstorm sessions resulted in various plans, like manufacturing Ajax shirts from plastic, receiving a discount in the canteen when using your own cup, having servicemen take used plastic materials with them (instead of leaving them behind at the customer).
"We will now start investigating which ideas we can actually adopt," says Marloes. "It's good to know that several ideas that were mentioned, are already being executed. Perhaps we should improve our communication regarding this. When it comes to circularity, we create a major impact through the products we install at our customers."
'Send back your used products'
VodafoneZiggo encourages customers to return obsolete or broken equipment. Ziggo customers receive a box they can use to send back their old equipment without any costs. On average, 90% of the devices are sent back. "In 2018 we received 1.1 million devices – among other things media boxes, modems, routers and Wi-Fi boosters. The media boxes are refurbished and reused, provided they can be repaired. We delete all the data, replace parts, install new software and submit them to extensive tests." Also Vodafone customers can always hand in their old devices. In addition, we offer a financial incentive to sell back their old smartphones.