The office environment welcomes a mixture of personalities and cultures. People have different routines and different expectations of one another. Regardless of background, work safety applies to everyone. Discussing important safety concerns will help to create an appealing job environment. Office managers should discuss these 9 workplace safety topics to ensure the office functions smoothly.
Email and Computer Etiquette
Establish office wide rules that everyone will adopt. For example, encourage people not to send emails if they don’t advance a conversation. Saying “thanks!” only creates unnecessary emails. Instead, stick to the essentials and encourage coworkers to do the same. You should also decide how formal emails within the company should be. What may seem self explanatory to one person could be surprising to another. Make sure everyone is on the same page in terms of how to communicate and be respectful.
Problems such as email scams or untrustworthy links could be the topic of a 5 minute workplace safety talk. Corrupted files or computers with viruses take time away from real work. Employees are forced to deal with technology issues instead of company strategy. Educating employees about what to be careful online is a step towards increasing office productivity by eliminating distractions.
Stop and take a deep breath from time to time. Mental health can be a safety topic of the day. Enlighten employees about various services that are available to them either at work or to be done at home. These include meditating, making positive reflections about the day, journaling, listening to music, or even stretching. Employees often become overwhelmed and would benefit from learning tips about how to avoid stress. Mental health deserves attention because attitude in the workplace impacts a person’s relationship with others and overall work quality.
Always invite feedback from employees. Many people already have their own personal health practices or exercises. Give them an opportunity to share what works for them with the group. Coworkers’ strategies to stay mentally fit could surprise you.
Studies show that a person needs seven to nine hours of sleep each night to perform their best. Fatigued people have slower reaction times and are less mentally alert. Communicate to your employees that exhaustion affects all aspects of their life. It’s not something that can be turned off once people walk through their workplace doors. Sleep deprived people pay less attention to safety procedures and can become a danger in the office. Encourage employees to prioritize sleep each night.
Other related workplace safety topics for meetings include diet, exercise, and personal care. There’s a lot to be said for the increased confidence and energy that a healthy diet and regular exercise can bring to the table. Furthermore, looking presentable and professional communicates that the employee can handle their obligations and balance them with their personal life.
Office Security Access
Let employees know their responsibilities and privileges, as well as their restrictions. Codes, passwords, and personal information should never be shared with people outside the company. Every company uses a different access control system. For example, Kisi is an access control company that regulates workplace security through installed software. Make your employees familiar with their office security and make sure they understand access rules. This is a great safety topic for the workplace because maintaining a secure office is critical in efficiency and effectiveness at work.
Workplace Violence and Sexual Harassment
All companies have people to talk to if an employee feel unsafe or uncomfortable by something that happened at work. Make your employees familiar with these contacts. Everyone should feel like they are in a supportive and understanding space. When conversations about violence or harassment are regular and genuine, even if it’s in a short workplace safety talk, employees will be more likely to speak up if ever in a tough situation. Let your employees know of any training sessions or workplace development plans so that they have an opportunity to participate or ask more questions.
Unexpected things happen all the time. Encourage your employees to be attentive wherever they go and notice their surroundings. Someone’s observant attitude could be the reason why an ambulance gets called in an emergency situation, or why a presentation runs smoothly after a mistake is corrected. Office managers’ goals include looking beyond their basic duties and employees should be encouraged to do the same.
While you may sound like a flight attendant as you alert your employees of the nearest exits, this safety topic for the workplace makes a difference in the long run. What may seem boring, repetitive, or self-explanatory now, will be the information that ensures your safety if an emergency or disaster occurs. Emergency action plans typically look similar company to company. Cover this safety topic briefly, while still providing enough detail that your employees learn something. You can also alert employees of where they can find medical assistance or first-aid supplies, should they ever need them.
Reminding your employees to stand up and take a walk every few hours is a great safety topic for the workplace. People harm themselves when they sit in a chair for too long, type too much, or strain their eyes from staring at a screen without taking a break. Often times people get caught up in tasks and continue to grind away. But people, cube dwellers especially, need an escape from time to time. Encourage everyone to watch out for one another and suggest finding a change of scenery when someone stays in the office too long.
Nobody wants stubbed toes or bruised shins. Reducing clutter in the office will decrease any risk for needless injury. Encourage employees to keep their office space clear and clean. Workers should regularly sort through their paperwork and office materials and either file documents away or toss them in the trash. Organization may seem like a hassle, but it will always be appreciated when in a rush to find something.