Prioritizing Safety During Professional Development in COVID-19

With many businesses and offices re-opening, employers are faced with new challenges in the face of COVID-19. As these challenges aren’t expected to disappear anytime soon, it’s integral to have a plan to keep employees safe and healthy as they learn and grow in their profession.

safety

Here are some helpful tips for staying safe while getting back into course work and professional development seminars.

Create Daily Sanitization Procedures

Regardless of how many employees or course attendees they have, every employer has a responsibility to sanitize and maintain the workspace. As such, it’s important to have daily sanitization procedures in place. 

Many of the great ideas for getting started depend on where your course work is taking place. If you’re hosting sessions in a school setting, such as a rented lecture hall, discuss the cleaning protocols with your point of contact. Don’t hesitate to follow up with your own cleaning rituals. Keep your workplace stocked with benefect botanical disinfectant, decon 30, and home pro solutions by ProSolutions Direct to ensure you have everything you need to keep the office clean, reducing the risk of spread as your employees go offsite. Create a list and communicate what steps are taken each day to your employees. It’s also worth empowering them to be responsible for their workstation and incorporate sanitation steps into their daily duties. 

Create Flexible Work Options

After record-breaking global layoffs and skyrocketing unemployment rates, employees are scared about their lack of job security and income loss. 

Give your employees options to take professional development courses from home or altering their schedules as needed. Provide the resources they need to work from home if someone in their household becomes ill. You may need to rethink all of your systems and processes to make this shift, but it will be worth it for the continuity of your business.

Prioritize Mental Health

Personal development and wellbeing often goes hand-in-hand with business success. While many employers pay close attention to their employees’ physical health, mental health implications are getting overlooked. While we’re all in the same situation, everyone has different individual experiences based on their lifestyle, home situation, and past. 

Schedule regular group and one-on-one check-ins with your employees to discuss their goals and worries. Ask them which courses and development opportunities suit their goals and how you can facilitate their success. Ask them if they’re in the mental headspace to explore development courses currently, or if they need to stay in the status quo for now. 

Improve Circulation, Ventilation, and Purification

Air quality will be more important than ever going forward. As many of the COVID-19 symptoms are similar to regular cold and flu symptoms, it’s vital to make the air as clean as possible to prevent all illnesses. 

Before you plan on hosting numerous employees in one learning center, have your ventilation checked to determine what needs to be cleaned, replaced, or upgraded. Consider the possibility of opening windows in smaller areas or moving training sessions outside. Finally, invest in a few high-quality air purifiers to help eliminate airborne germs.

Put Strict Protocols in Place

While it’s vital to be flexible in some areas, it’s equally important to be strict in others. Put clearly defined protocols in place regarding screening for illnesses before attending in-person sessions, and what to do if an employee is symptomatic. Communication and adherence is everything here, and no exceptions should be made for employees or customers.

If you have a remote course using video conferencing, ensure all employees know what’s required in terms of communication. 

Rethink Shared Surfaces and Materials

Many businesses rely on shared materials and communal areas to function. It’s vital to rethink these norms in a post-pandemic world. 

Consider what tools you can put in place to limit shared materials and common areas. Use cloud sharing to provide copies of presentations and workbooks. Shift your floorplan to make more space while people learn in an in-person environment.

Businesses around the world are facing similar challenges with the new normal. By protecting your employees, you’ll increase loyalty and engagement by showing that you’re truly in this together.

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