Many of you are worried about supporting your team and wondering how to maintain the health and safety of your employees. So much has changed in just a few short months. Even for the most experienced employees, this is a time that feels especially uncertain. As you start to open up and address the new changes to your business model, it is a great time to revisit how you communicate and engage with staff as well!
Have you been closed these last few months or provided limited service through delivery or takeout options? There is going to be a noticeable shift in operations between when the stay at home order went into effect and what customers (and your team) are going to experience once they step foot back inside the shop for the first time.
Whether it is through enforcing social distancing practices, enhanced safety procedures or just managing the volume of customers as you start getting back up and running, there is a lot of pressure on both you and the staff.
Caring for your team’s health and safety is important, but it is also important to keep mental wellness in mind. If you are looking for tips on how to be there for your team as you get ready for this new phase of business, keep reading!
Maintaining the Health and Safety of Your Team
Aside from new challenges in the operations aspect of the business, the team’s health and safety is something to focus on as you move forward in the reopening process. Employees are going to be looking to management and shift managers for guidance and leadership – so this is an essential time to provide both!
What does it mean to maintain the health and safety of your staff? Here are a few aspects to consider:
- Make sure they feel safe and comfortable with the new protective measures – both within the business and as they come into contact with customers.
- Stay transparent with messaging and keep everyone in the loop with any new policy changes.
- Encourage employees to follow all sanitation practices – both for their own health and to create a sense of safety within the business.
- Be flexible with the team’s working hours. So much has changed for your employees outside of work – such as schools being closed – that makes it hard for parents to manage both working and addressing childcare.
While the team gets used to the new normal, look for ways to connect and be empathetic. Regular team meetings are a great way for management to connect with employees – this provides a platform in which the team can share ideas, feedback and any concerns they have during a shift.
Keep in mind that not everyone communicates the same way! For some of your team members, they might prefer to talk one-on-one with you so it is a good idea to provide that time, if necessary.
Creating a Healthy and Safe Environment
Of course, following the guidelines set forth by the CDC and state agencies in your business is required for opening up, but all team members should be aware and trained in new practices designed to keep them (and customers) safe and limit the potential spread of COVID-19.
This includes training on how to best serve customers while also following new practices – especially when it comes to social distancing. As businesses open, there is definitely going to be a learning curve on how to provide great customer service while also adhering to state guidelines.
Depending on your location, updates and considerations may vary. Stay connected with your county’s recommendations by visiting one of these websites:
By helping your team adopt and follow the safest procedures – wearing proper protective equipment, washing hands frequently, providing contactless payment and ordering options — it also shows your customers that safety is of high importance. This builds confidence and reassurance in your staff and customers that your business is a safe and clean space!
For the latest updates and information regarding your business, visit the CDC website.