COVID-19 certainly gets a lot of attention these days, but there are plenty of common colds and other viruses that make their way through the workplace every year. If you find that you often get sick at work, particularly during the fall and winter, your contracting business might benefit from implementing a few healthy practices. Here are five easy ideas to consider.
- Avoid Sharing Food
One of the best ways to minimize the spread of viruses is to stop sharing food. You probably already know not to split a drink with your coworkers, but this practice should extend to other types of food as well. If you’re participating in a shared meal, make sure there are adequate implements for each dish so that no one uses their hands to serve. For communal eating arrangements, keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. After all, food poisoning is often caused by bacteria or viruses, which can also be spread from one person to another.
- Make Hygiene Easy
In order to keep people from spreading illnesses in the early period before they show symptoms, you should try to improve your hygiene options at the job site and regular workspace:
- Keep tissues, paper towels, and napkins handy in the break area
- Make cleaning supplies readily available, and ensure they are well-stocked
- Put up signs with hygiene tips in the bathroom and break room
Your goal is to make cleaning up after eating or using the bathroom as routine and quick as possible. If people have to search for the next roll of paper towels or deal with a clogged soap pump, they probably won’t do it.
- Encourage Healthy Habits
Disease prevention involves promoting healthy habits. After all, if you are in better health, your body can usually fight back harder against viruses. As such, you can encourage the people you work with to take steps to improve their overall health:
- Eating healthy food
- Regular exercise
- Wellness checkups
- Updated vaccinations, including tetanus, flu, and COVID-19
These steps don’t always stop the spread of viruses, of course. But they make it easier for people to check in with themselves and know when something is wrong. That way, they learn early when they get sick and can take action sooner.
- Clean Frequently-Used Surfaces
Most viruses like the cold or flu transmit by droplets in the air or by contact. As such, people who are contagious may touch a surface, then spread the illness when someone else comes in contact with it. You can minimize this problem by cleaning high-touch areas, especially around hygiene and eating stations. A little more attention toward cleaning up break areas and wiping down doors or keypads can make a big difference. Keep in mind that a wet paper towel won’t be sufficient. A spray or wipe with antibacterial and antiviral cleaning agents is best.
- Offer Flex Time for Illness
When people get sick, you really want them to stay home. Sick people are more likely to make mistakes and could possibly get injured or injure others by accident. That’s on top of the fact that people who have a cold or another virus will spread it to more people if they have to go to work. Instead, consider offering flex-time that people can use when they get sick. Paid time off is a great option, but flex time is too. With this option, workers who are too sick to work on Monday might be able to put in more time later to make it up. They don’t lose income, and you and the other workers on the job site are less likely to get sick.
Preventing the spread of disease seems like a big deal, but it really can be quite simple. When you follow these tips, you may notice that cold and flu season isn’t as disastrous for you or your contracting business. To learn more about the steps to becoming a licensed contractor, contact CSLS today!