Beating Bugs in the Office this Winter: A Healthier Workplace
It is common knowledge that people get sick more often during winter – which can place a huge burden on businesses. Seasonal illness can have a huge effect on businesses of all sizes in all sectors, but especially SMEs with few team members. Just having one person off ill can put pressure on other employees, which could then make them ill – it’s a vicious circle.
Did you know?
- A quarter of all sick days are attributed to the common cold
- 3 in 4 Brits feel run down or tired during the winter months
- The average adult suffers from three colds, four headaches and two sore throats every winter
With these facts in mind, it’s important for managers and business owners to take steps to try and reduce the possibility of illness in the work place during winter. Here are some top tips:
Don’t discourage time off
It may be hard to cope with one or two staff members off sick – but it’s actually the best course of action if they are suffering from cold, flu or sore throat. If an employee has a bug or a contagious cold, it may do more harm than good if they come into the workplace with their germs. One ill staff member can cause several other people to also become ill – so encourage people to stay off work if they are ill rather than come into the office and pass around the illness.
Promote healthy choices
While some winter illnesses are unavoidable, building the immune system of your staff will help fight some winter bugs. Offer free fruit around the office at lunch and break times and provide super juices and other healthy drinks at meetings. You could also run a ‘winter health’ campaign with posters offering top tips for keeping well this season.
Give a day off
When people are over-tired, stressed or feeling run down, they are more likely to become ill. With this in mind, why don’t you give employees an extra day off to take in winter or organise an away day at a spa? This extra day could be used for Christmas shopping, visiting relatives or just relaxing at home. It’s a nice gesture your staff will appreciate, but it could also work to rejuvenate them and keep them feeling positive and motivated.
Do you have any other ideas for keeping staff well this winter? Let us know.