Tips for Social Distancing at Work
In this era of Covid-19, it is not possible for everyone to work remotely from home. For those who can’t, social distancing, as well as wearing a face mask, is highly suggested and mandated in some places. Some people don’t take the coronavirus precautionary measures seriously. Some refuse to wear a mask or social distance. How do you deal with those individuals? Following are some tips for social distancing at work.
WEAR A MASK YOURSELF
Even if others won’t wear a mask, by wearing a mask you are still protecting yourself and others. Even when staying separated by six feet is not possible, wearing a mask can still help in reducing the spread of the virus. Of course, the most protection occurs when everyone wears a mask. You can do your best to try to encourage others around you to wear them.
For the mask to be most beneficial, make sure it covers both your nose and mouth. Make sure the mask has a snug fit around your face, allowing no openings between the fabric and your face. Often, people will wear a cloth mask over an N95 or a KN95 mask to help prolong its use. Do not touch your mask with unwashed hands. Leave the mask on all day, except when eating or drinking, of course, but the more you take the mask on and off, the higher the risk of possible contamination.
You might have to get a little assertive with some co-workers about their non-use of a mask or hygiene habits. That can be difficult and care should be taken not to get into a conversation that is going to escalate beyond reason and result in a shouting match. You will need to think about how you are going to let your colleague know that you would prefer he/she wear a mask and keep six feet away.
Try out different conversation starters on a friend first. Focus your words on protecting others and public safety; don’t make it sound like you are judging the other person. Try to find a somewhat pleasing way to suggest that they mask up and social distance. One line could be something like, “I’m sorry but I’m really worried about this virus and I’m in a high-risk category. Would you mind putting your mask on or standing farther away?”
ALTERNATIVE WORKING POSSIBILITIES
If working from home is a possibility, that option should be fully explored. Even if they could alter their work schedule to only going in to work two or three days a week, that could possibly be a help by reducing time spent in the workplace. Another thought would be to see if working on the weekends, when others aren’t in the workplace, could be an option. If the business could use shifts to stagger when employees come to work, such as an early shift, a late-night shift, or something that would work where there were fewer people in the workplace at any one given time, that could also be helpful.
Renting office space in Tampa in the Westshore District would give your business all the benefits of safe, social-distanced office spacing with the digital equipment already set up to take care of all your business needs.
KNOW YOUR COMPANY’S POLICY
Every worker deserves the right to be safe in their workspace. Every company should have a policy that was written and designed to set certain rights in place to keep workers safe. If some employees choose to violate that written policy, a supervisor or human resources manager may need to be involved. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) may be able to provide guidance if needed. A safe office policy may need to be introduced to the business. OSHA has offered the following recommendations:
- Please stay home if you are feeling sick.
- Sick employees should stay out of common areas of the workplace.
- Discuss the possibility of flexible working hours or remote working from home.
- Partitions or temporary barriers could be put up to create safer distancing.
- Place a mark, or piece of tape, on the floor every six feet to identify safer distancing.
KNOW YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS
A worker with a disability may have a legal right to request safer accommodations during this pandemic. “The Families First Coronavirus Response Act” was designed to help workers obtain more paid family medical leave if they have to care for sick family members. If issues cannot be worked out, an attorney can help workers explore their rights.
When you rent office space in Tampa with Office Evolution, the Tampa Westshore location is in an ideal setting to serve all your office needs. You can trust Office Evolution to have the environment sanitized and adjusted to fit with all social-distancing guidelines and that precautionary measures will be in place to keep everyone safe.