Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Hr & Administration
Hr & Administrtion
Getsie Jesse
Manager Human Resource
Hr Executive
Learning & Teaching Fellow (retired)
Kanika Kapoor
Soft And Behavioural Skills Trainer
Human Resource
+8 Others

Thread Started by #Venkatesh Mohan

In our mid size company, for the past 15 days there was abnormal usage of Toilet - tissue papers. We found unused papers also in the dustbin.
Can we do something by means of educating(?) or sending mails to all of our staff on this.
Need your suggestion.
11th June 2013 From India, Chennai
Dear Venkatesh,
I feel that it could be because of someone's frustration also. By destroying tissue papers someone or group of employees (though it could be small group) are venting their anger.
You may issue the circular and for a while stop issue of tissue papers. During this time, see if something else starts getting mutilated or destroyed. Also check whether this destruction continues after restoration of tissue papers.
Dinesh V Divekar
11th June 2013 From India, Bangalore
Put picture having message "save paper save world.'" so every time they get aware of importance of paper.
11th June 2013 From India, Nasik
Dear Venkatesh Mohan,
I'm completely agreed with Mr. Dinesh V Divekar, so first you try to know who is making such type of activity after knowing you can make personal counselling with that individual(s) and ask to him/them what made him/them for make such activity & also try to convince him/them how paper is important for our earth and ourselves.
With Regards
11th June 2013 From India, Ranchi
I agree with Dinesh regarding his first point.
Please do not stop providing tissue papers, its quite embarrassing at time when you just don't get them to dry your hands. You can reduce the quantity of providing tissue stock. Rather keep refilling at frequent intervals.
Best thing is to find the root cause of this.
11th June 2013 From India, Madras
Hello Mr Venkatesh,

I agree with Mr Dinesh and Mr Vrushy. In my view, you should follow the below steps -

Step 1. Educating the peaople by putting banner in toilet like "Save Paper and Save Earth" (as metioned by Vrushy).

Step 2. Sensetize the employees, by sending emails mentioning that toilet paper is overused. Also mention that the admin is closely monitoring the usage and if the usage does not go down in next few days, then company will be forced to withdraw toilet paper facility.

Step 3: Wait for few days.

Step 4: If usage comes down to normal, then nothing to do. However, if usage does not come down, then withdraw the toilet issue facility for few days.

Step 5: In case of withdrawal, send the email to all employees mentioning the reason for withdrawal.

Step 6: After couple of months, you can coduct an email survey from employees asking them if they want to restore the facility. It is natural that all employees will opt for this.

Step 7: Monitor the usage now. In high probabilty, the usage must come to normal now.
12th June 2013 From India, Bangalore
Dear Venkatesh,
All others have given you good ideas of the cause and/or solutions. Henc, let me ask a couple of questions. What is the nature of work done in your organisation? It's not enough to know the size to understand what type of workers are involved. Can you tell us if there has been any discontent among workers, of late?
12th June 2013 From United Kingdom
Put message in washrooms :-
Humans are the only creature in this world
Who cut the trees and made paper
PAPER (TREE) is the property of universe
Please Save Paper, Save Universe
If you are corporate with us for saving trees
- we are highly appreciated to you
If it's not works, stop to provide facility of paper napkins and toilet papers for days.
12th June 2013 From India, New Delhi
Dear All,
Even i am facing same problem with our company also. i have already sent mails regarding proper usage of tissue papers and water(the taps would be kept open). For few days we stopped issuing tissue rolls and later on we continued to place tissue rolls then also no improvement. Please help me out with your valuable suggestions .
12th June 2013 From India, Bangalore
HI All,

The condition the you all are referring is indeed a critical one.

If you will withdraw the tissue papers directly, it will be bad for the repo of company for employees. So that option is not suggested.

In case if you will use banners like save paper save earth, that will only help in handling 10 to 20% of utilization as we have also faced the same thing in our company. So that is a good choice but will not help much.

Other suggest as mentioned above was to send mail etc., but if someone is doing this kind of thing intentionally then it will help for few days only as he or they will start doing it after a period of time.

Now what i suggest would be to change the technology and go for hot air box(hand dryer) kind of solution as they are one time investment only and look cool too. Also, some people don't like them even, i my self don't like it but after a period of time, people get over it and start using it or using their own hand towels :) .......


Sanchita Gulati
12th June 2013 From India, Delhi
Hot air hand drier only helps to avoid the use of paper towels. However, to eleiminate toilet-paper one needs to spend a lot. Please see what Japanese technology does at Introducing the high-tech paperless toilet that leaves you clean and dry without cutting down trees | Mail Online
13th June 2013 From United Kingdom
Dear Venkatesh,

You are aware that removing the tissue paper from the dispenser has to be done in a particular fashion and in my opinion, some employees are not aware of this. They tend to tug at the tissue paper visible at the bottom of the dispenser and when they find that it does not get released they tend to tug at the bunch of tissues found at the bottom of the dispenser and finally end up with a bunch of tissue papers in their hand and eventually they cannot shove the unused paper into the dispenser and hence quietly dispose it off in the dustbin. Explore to find out if new entrants are the cause for this problem. The reason for this thought was you have mentioned that you experience this problem only for the past 15 days.

However, you can think of yet another solution which is simpler. You may consider placing a terry towel in a towel stand besides the hand wash or a hand drier as yet another member has suggested. You may have to change the towel as frequently as required depending upon the number of people using the washroom. Those employees who are not comfortable with the tissue dispenser or hand drier may feel comfortable to use the towel. You may also train the new entrants on the usage of tissue paper during the induction process as they may find it embarrassing to check with anybody on the methodology of usage.

13th June 2013 From India, Madras
Hi All, In one of the companies I know, they implemented a leader board where we used to log the food wastage in the cafeteria. It worked. Can we try something similar?
13th June 2013 From India, Tirupur
Dear Venkatesh, Instead of keeping Tissue paper in Toilet why should you try to keep Hand Towels, and based on your employee size keep 2 or 3 and that should be change in AF section. Regards, Raju.V
13th June 2013 From India, Chennai
It is the attitude of the Employees.
1.To express their frustration that leads to anger.
2.Their casual attitude.
Find out who are the frustrated people and the reason for the frustration.- Are they assigned with more load than their capacity? Try to resolve the matter without delay. Frustration leads to anger and anger leads to destruction.
Also remember "Responsibility without accountability leads to corruption and Accountability without responsibility leads to frustration.
Throwing paper in the dust bin may be the beginning, which may get aggravated if the situation is not controlled immediately.
Holding the supply of paper is not going to solve the problem.
Analyze the situation, talk to the individuals, try to find out their difficulties and provide the right solution.
You will be the winner.
13th June 2013 From India, Pune
This is not a matter to sweat much on. If you are a small company, simply install jet spray in toilet seats and do away with toilet paper. If you are a medium/large company, dont sweat over small matters and focus on bigger things
13th June 2013 From India, Mumbai
Dear Venkatesh,

Several members have given their valuable suggestions. However, you have not even given simple acknowledgement for any post. What does this show?

For the members who have given replies: - The situation is a result of some person's disgruntlement. It has not arisen out of lack of environmental consciousness. To certain extent Mr Pundalik has touched upon this factor. Educating employees on saving paper is important but it would be misplaced solution for the situation at hand.

In OB we have studied "Defence Mechanism". Destruction of tissue papers fall in the category of "Acting Out" or to certain extent in "Passive-aggressive Behaviour".

The incident could be pointer to the organisation's culture. Does Venkatesh's company has culture of ownership?

Generally behaviours of these types are exhibited by lower rung of employees. Therefore, Venkatesh can keep watch on these employees. He can keep records of the consumption of tissue paper. By chance if the consumption restores back to the normal level then he can check who was on leave on that day. This way he can zero in on the culprits. A thought had crossed my mind to suggest to install CCTV cameras in the toilets however, it is too costly solution. Generally we keep dog as pet to safeguard our house. Installation of CCTV cameras in the toilet would tantamount to keeping tiger as pet to guard the dog!


Dinesh V Divekar

14th June 2013 From India, Bangalore
Dear Dinesh Sir,
I have seen your valuable comments on use of tissue paper.
I would like to know more about these small small initiatives which increase employee productivity (in some how) & reduce company cost, directly focus on comapny objective,
sir, i have started sending
1. Thought for the day daily to all employees
2. Sharing some good articles time to time
3. Inspirational & motivational paper printout on glass,
4. Checklist for washroom
5. Checklist for house keeping
please guide me,
17th June 2013 From India, Mumbai
Dear Mamta,

The initiatives that you have mentioned are good for a person who is level-headed. But what about the woolly-headed? Here the case is of one oddball or few disgruntled employees. What is happening in this case is wilful destruction of the company property. Though the company property is not that costly, the psychology of that person is quite evident. Your sane thoughts, I doubt, will create any impact on this unscrupulous employee .

Have you checked my second comment for this post? I have tried to bring out distinction between disgruntled employee and general concern about environmental issues. Issue at hand has to be seen in right perspective and that is what many members who replied this post have failed to do so!

Anyway thanks for addressing your post specifically to me.

Dinesh V Divekar

Dear Dinesh Sir,

I have seen your valuable comments on use of tissue paper.

I would like to know more about these small small initiatives which increase employee productivity (in some how) & reduce company cost, directly focus on comapny objective,

sir, i have started sending

1. Thought for the day daily to all employees

2. Sharing some good articles time to time

3. Inspirational & motivational paper printout on glass,

4. Checklist for washroom

5. Checklist for house keeping

please guide me,
17th June 2013 From India, Bangalore
Please install automatic hot air blowers to resolve this issue. So that you can cut recurring cost.
17th June 2013 From India, Vijayawada
It is amazing that the blogger who raised the query has not responded even after Dinesh Divekar has pointed it out.
I am also astonished at some of the responses that clearly shows that the respondents have not read all the replies b efore commenting.
I also fee that many have not appreciated the difference between a "toilet tissue/paper" and a "paper towel." If the problem is that of toilet tissue/paper, not providing it could lead to major problems. If it is the latter then provision of hot-air dryer or towels may be a solution.
18th June 2013 From United Kingdom
The root cause behind the issue is some thing else. Employees might be dissatisfied over a company policy or it could be some employee welfare measure that might have sparked the protest, that needs to be addressed by the management. This, being a sensitive issue, needs to be handled with utmost care.
18th June 2013 From India, Vijayawada
Dear Venkatesh,
First, It might be the act of some employees or a single person. So dont stop restoring tissue paper. All should not suffer coz of this.
Second, Don view this matter lightly..... its a indication... He/She may do this to show the anger towards the organisation. this anger may go to any extent if it continues for a long period....Sooo try to find out the problem exist with the organisation or the ppl in organisation.
Third, Better have system of posting a complaint on complaint box by taking a printout without their name & solve those.
Nizammuddin K
20th June 2013 From India, Madras
Hie!! Have an electric hand dryer installed (once and for all) Hope it helps!! Regards, Kanika
20th June 2013 From India, Delhi
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