Sick woman at work drinking coffee

No matter how much you love your job and how much you love working with the people you work with, there’s one thing nobody likes – illness in the workplace. From offices to factories (and even medical centers, ironically enough), whenever you get people working in close proximity you always run the risk of illness spreading through the office and making everyone take sick days at the same time. If you want to try and protect your workers from colds, flus, and the like, here’s a few tips to encourage workplace cleanliness:

 

Keep Personal Areas Clean

If your business has desks, cubicles, individual workstations, or any place where employees can work on their own, the first step in fighting illness is to encourage personal cleanliness. Make sure everyone throws out their paper plates, food containers, and the like to prevent spoiled food and germs from piling up, and try to encourage the occasional disinfecting of things that get touched frequently like keyboards and phones – anti-bacterial spray or cleansing wipes are perfect for this, and they’re always a good idea to keep around even if it isn’t flu season.

 

Use Easy-To-Clean Materials

Speaking of cleaning, anything in a common area like a breakroom or a conference room needs extra attention when it comes to cleaning and disinfecting. One of the easiest ways to keep up on cleanliness in these common areas is to make sure the fixtures you use are easy-to-clean and generally sterile surfaces. Chrome shelving and plastic shelving are durable, easy to keep clean and sterile, and generally don’t allow a place for germs to make a home the same way materials like wood do.

 

Increase Employee Awareness

Aside from overall cleanliness goals, the best way to keep your employees healthy is to keep them aware of germs and illness going around. Post reminders during flu season to help your employees remember to get vaccinated, keep their hands washed, and so on. You don’t want everyone’s first indicator of flu season to be someone coughing and sneezing all over the office – when the weather starts to turn and the colds are in the air, make sure your employees know to be extra careful.

 

Don’t Be A Hero

And finally, if someone in your office does get sick, make sure to encourage usage of sick days. A lot of offices and workplaces give the impression that they look down on calling in sick, but not only is this dangerous for your employees, it’s also the responsible thing to do to encourage workers to get healthy before they get the rest of the office sick with them. As soon as someone in the office starts looking a little unwell, encourage (but don’t force) them to take a day or two off to recuperate. They – and the rest of the office – will thank you.

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