Sadly, winter is upon us, daylight is shorter, and the dark evenings are approaching quickly after 6pm. It is oh too easy this time of year to go into hibernation and forget about looking after ourselves and our employees’ health.
The flu is spread easily, from 1-2 days before symptoms develop and up to 5 days after symptoms develop. As it is highly contagious when it comes into an office it can be detrimental to your workforce, there are some simple steps in how to prevent the flu this winter within your workplace.
Preventing the spread of germs is essential for limiting the impact of colds and flus. Winter is the most important time to remind employees to exercise good workplace hygiene. Providing educational posters, anti-bacterial hand soap, and hand sanitizer can go a long way to keeping employees healthy. If the workplace contains a lot of shared workstations, encourage staff to wipe them down regularly.
During the winter, hours of daylight are at an all-time low and grey skies are more common. Some employees may develop Season Affective Disorder (SAD) which can lead to decreased energy and increased irritability. SAD has a lot in common with depression and employees affected may need to make lifestyle changes and see a mental health professional to help them manage it. Workplace education can help employees recognise the symptoms of SAD in themselves and others.
The winter holiday season can be a good time to offer some workplace training focused on financial management. Most employees will spend more money during the winter because of the holidays and increased fuel costs. Financial education can help employees better manage their finances and reduce the stress associated with increased costs.
Although it may be cold outside, encouraging employees to move and get outside when possible is key. An onsite workplace gym or a partnership with a local gym can encourage employees to be active or providing activities like on-site yoga can help facilitate physical activity during the winter months.
It’s important to encourage employees to stay home if they are sick. If employees feel compelled to come to work while they are sick it can spread illness throughout the organisation. Frequent absenteeism can be addressed by tracking sick days to ensure that employees are using them appropriately.
It can be difficult for employees to stay healthy active through the winter months. It’s cold, there’s less daylight, colds and flus are abundant, and people tend to become less active. There are many ways employers can help make sure that the health of their employees doesn’t suffer this winter.
Consider offering employer-paid or discounted flu vaccinations to keep employees healthy and reduce the number of sick days. It’s important to raise awareness of flu season and encourage employees to get their flu vaccinations at a local health centre or pharmacy. You can also increase participation by bringing in a nurse to administer vaccinations on site. Many employees may forget to venture out on their own time to get their vaccinations and are more likely to get it if it’s convenient during their workday.
This year Zevo Health are offering flu vaccinations and can keep your company healthy and well all winter long.
Please contact us on [email protected] for more information on Flu Vaccinations.
*This is not medical advice, please contact a medical professional if you think you need to seek further help.