Every year, around this time, businesses across the country face an issue that can cost thousands in lost productivity: cold and flu season. Follow the simple steps below to keep your workplace happy and healthy … and enjoy a healthy bottom line.
#1 Hygiene hygiene hygiene
Encourage frequent hand washing amongst staff, perhaps even using reminder posters. Hands should be washed using antibacterial soap for at least 15-20 seconds before and after eating, before and after using the bathroom, after coughing or sneezing. Effective hand drying is equally important: consider cloth towel dispensers for maximum hygiene.
#2 Sick employees belong at home
Encourage staff to stay home when they are sick (and for at least 24 hours after any fever is gone) – a cold or flu is not the sort of thing you should be sharing. If an employee MUST be at work, keeping a distance from others can help.
#3 More hygiene
Make tissues and gel hand sanitisers freely available throughout your workplace for when a full hand wash isn’t possible. Make sure there are plenty of bins available for used tissues too!
#4 Stop the spread of germs
Encourage employees to cough or sneeze either in to a tissue (which should then be thrown away) or in to their sleeve. If hands are used they should be throughly washed and dried … every single time.
#5 Flu shot
Encouraging flu vaccination (possibly even arranging for this to take place in the workplace) will also help to reduce the incidence of more serious sickness (influenza). Be sure to check with your medical practitioner if you are a candidate for vaccination.
#6 Look after yourself
Eating and sleeping well is essential for a healthy immune system … and a healthy immune system has a much better chance of fighting off infections.
Regular exercise, particularly cardiovascular exercise, provides your immune system with a boost. While you may not manage to avoid every bug going around, you will recover faster and probably suffer less severe symptoms.
#8 Avoid stress
While it is easier said than done, avoiding stress is also good for the immune system. If stress is something you struggle with, try some relaxation techniques. Many people find that regular exercise helps to alleviate stress (see above).
#9 Keep the workplace clean
Thorough and regular cleaning and disinfecting will prevent the spread of germs. Services such as Fresh & Clean can assist with regular and professional cleaning and hygiene treatment.
#10 Air quality
Improving indoor air quality will help to support staff immune systems. Fresh, clean air can be achieved In a variety of ways such as ensuring ventilation systems are clean and through the use of indoor plants.