As workplaces begin to reopen or provide options to come back into the office, employees are faced with a difficult decision. Is it safe? Although it’s mostly the employer’s responsibility to keep employees safe, employees also need to assess their situations, understand the risks, and take preventative measures. Below we’ve outlined tips for creating a safe environment when you head back to work.
The Do’s and Don’ts
Wash or sanitize your hands when you arrive
Schedule reminders throughout the day to keep your hands clean
Wear a Mask in shared spaces
Stay 6 feet apart from others
Touch Your Face
Come into work when feeling ill
Back to the Basics
Of course, it’s crucial to stick to social distancing protocol, washing your hands as often as possible, and keeping a cleaning regime at work. Mask wearing can reduce your likelihood of exposure. Get clear with your employer on what the rules are when returning to the office.
Ask for What You Need
If you are unsure about going back to work or need extra resources to feel comfortable, reach out to your boss or HR and be clear about what’s needed. It’s important to consider that your employer is also dealing with lots of uncertainty and trying to do their best. Make suggestions and ensure it’s safe for all.
Be Aware of Break Areas & Elevators
Be most cautious of areas where people frequent and gather in small spaces. Avoid peak times in the break room and wait for the next elevator if there are too many people. It’s the small things that we can do to stay safer. If there’s an option to do half days or enter the office when fewer people are around, that will always be the safer route.
Use Outdoor Spaces
When you need to meet others in person, do so outside! Socializing at work doesn’t have to be completely cut out, it’s important we still feel connected to one another. Try social distance coffee catch-ups outdoors or on a walk around the block.
Hopefully, your employer has sanitation stations set up around the office, but you can create your own at your desk as well. Bring hand sanitizer, cleaning spray, and paper towels to start. Throw a few extra masks in a drawer just in case.
Don’t Forget to Wash
Wash your clothes and your mask every day when you come home.
Mental Health is Important Too
Lastly, let’s take care of our minds, as well! If going into the office is causing anxiety and you feel safer at home, make sure to communicate this. Most employers are doing their best to be flexible right now.
Overall, going back to work can be safe if you are extra aware of the new protocol and practice social distancing and wearing a mask. Be mindful of all interactions with others, and hopefully, getting back into the office will help you to feel more set in a routine.
For more information about District Offices’ coworking spaces, COVID safety practices, or how to transition back into the office, get in touch!