How sustainability became more than a job, it became my lifestyle

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In my two decades as a Schneider Electric employee, I’ve heard the word sustainability mentioned thousands, if not millions, of times. And I’ve been inspired, particularly in these last few years, by our company’s efforts to be a sustainability leader and guide our partners on their decarbonization journeys.

But it wasn’t until recently that I fully understood my role in driving sustainability — not just as an employee of one of the world’s most sustainable corporations, but at home.

Step #1: Investing in Solar 

When I moved to Boston and became a homeowner, I knew that energy costs for heat would be high. And after just three short months and sky-high bills, I realized I needed to look at other energy options.

My husband and I were interested in solar because we thought it might make financial sense and also be good for the planet. We investigated our options using EnergySage and were struck by the simplicity and ease of engaging in that marketplace. We even received education on how to make the most of federal, state, and local rebates and incentives. 

Within a few months, and with the support of a great solar installer who provided advice, we had a complete solar array on our roof! 

Step #2: Realizing the Benefits 

The most amazing thing I have noticed about solar is our electricity bill. Because of the credit we receive for selling our generated energy back to the utility, we never have to pay! When considering the cost of the system and installation, it took five years for us to “breakeven.” Plus, we increased the value of our home. 

Beyond the financial benefits, going solar and becoming a true prosumer — someone who produces and consumes energy — feels good! 20% of carbon emissions in the U.S. come from our homes, so I like to know that my family is doing our part to use fewer fossil fuels and electrify the grid.

The journey forward: transitioning to a sustainability lifestyle 

Over the years, I’ve become more passionate about living sustainably. Today, I compost, drive an electric vehicle, and monitor my home energy use with Wiser Energy home power monitor. Sustainability has become my lifestyle. 

The evolution from being a passive participant in Schneider’s sustainability journey to becoming an advocate and prosumer aficionado was not intentional. But the more I learned about living more sustainably, the more I wanted to try for myself.

And the value speaks for itself.

My energy bills are low. I’m using fewer resources. I’m modeling the right behaviors for my son. And it doesn’t hurt that I feel more connected to what Schneider stands for.

My biggest advice to those who don’t know how to start living more sustainably is to start where you’re comfortable. Even small things like turning off lights, unplugging electronics, and driving less make a big difference.

Join us as we build the new energy landscape

I’m proud to share that Schneider U.S. employees receive financial incentives for sustainability investments, including rebates for going solar and installing an EV charger, plus Schneider Electric solution reimbursements for residential products.

This benefit is just one of the many ways we’re encouraging our people to “walk the talk” to bridge progress and sustainability for all.

Want to join one of the world’s most sustainable corporations? Visit our Career page to view the open opportunities.

About the author

Author Profile

Mai Lan Nguyen, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Schneider Electric

As HR Leader for North America, Mai Lan partners with a team of great HR professionals to execute a people strategy that engages employees to perform at their best. By shaping the best employee experience through innovative people policies and inclusive programming enabled by digital, she’s driving business success and growth. Mai Lan defines herself as a global nomad and has been with Schneider Electric for 17 years.

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