As we get into the final month and a half of the year, people are busy making their holiday plans and preparing their homes and Christmas lists. In anticipation of the year’s busiest season, do you already have your safety measures in place at your workplace?
Even though there will be a significant decrease in the number of in-store shoppers this year, this doesn’t mean that people won’t be flooding stores. A lot of people may be doing their online shopping, but there are also plenty of folks who prefer to do their Christmas shopping in the traditional way.
And while the holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, it can also be the most stressful. You need to put certain measures in place that will ensure everyone’s safety
9 Ways to Protect Your Workplace this Christmas
1. Minimize the risk of in-store violence.
We all know that the chances of in-store violence — both verbal and physical — are higher during the holidays. Equip your team with proper training to diffuse potentially threatening situations to keep the incidents of workplace violence low.
2. Reinforce your manual handling system.
Where the movement of supplies and materials are involved, make sure that you have one of the safest manual handling systems in place. Additional training and better supervision can help improve the one you have in place now.
3. Prepare your team to work longer hours.
We all know that this is the busiest season of the year and most businesses, especially retail, operate on extended hours at this time of year. Get on top of the situation and help prepare your team mentally and physically for longer work hours. Revisit your holiday operations from the previous year and see where you can make improvements so that your team doesn’t get burned out during the holiday rush.
4. Make sure you rotate your staff by having them work in shifts.
Part of the preparations you should do is to plan your team’s working hours, especially if you’re working longer hours this season. There’s no sense in having everyone working 5 or 6 days a week at 12-hour workdays. Your staff will be working exhausted and stressed which can also trigger some unpleasant interactions with equally stressed customers.
Rotate them in shifts so that each member of the team is at their optimum level when at work. Hire seasonal workers if necessary just to help ease the workload for everyone and make it more manageable.
5. Be mindful of the vulnerable people on your team.
One more thing you should look out for is the welfare of the members of your team who are more vulnerable at this point — the elderly, the health-compromised, the pregnant women, and other special cases. Consider making adjustments for them with work hours or workload or whatever compromise you can agree upon that will be mutually beneficial.
6. Stay on top of your office’s or shop’s storage management system.
Check that all your storage’s exits and walkways are free from any obstructions. Stockrooms should be well-organized with everything stacked up neatly and orderly so that it’s easier to pull out stuff when you need them.
7. Ensure that your floors are in good condition.
Take note that winter is the wettest of the year and that customers are more likely to bring in more moisture inside your shop at this time. Keep all your floors — from the front to the back of the house — clean and in good condition to prevent trips and falls. Make sure that your people respond quickly to spills.
8. Bring order to your loading bays.
You need to be as organized as you can and plan ahead to stay on your schedule especially in this busy season. Have enough resources and manpower to manage the area. And have zero-tolerance for poor driving. This is something that you should no longer worry about with all that’s taking place in this rush.
9. Christmas decors and additional fixtures should be installed properly.
When decorating for the holidays, you need to make sure that everything is installed properly, especially if you plan to put up Christmas lights and LED outdoor wall packs. Ensure that no corners have been cut and that everything is done the way it should be to avoid any accidents like fires caused by faulty electrical work.
Pandemic or not, people want to celebrate the holidays if only to get something positive out of this year. You can help make it better for them by preparing your business well to take on the demands and the stresses of this season so that everyone will have a pleasant time doing business with you.