Thinking about the overall image of what business is, it's easy to picture great big office buildings with lots of people of different ages and backgrounds working together, showing off their talent and competing against different businesses. It's also a battle of ideas because certain products sit better with customers than others. There’s also a battle of wits, personalities, and characters. Being involved in business is a great life and even more so when you run your own business. However, whenever the topic of health and safety comes up, we start to yawn and try to stay awake. For employees who want to express their creativity and show how skilled they are in everyday work, it's the boring part of business.
On the other hand, for business owners, it's a sensitive topic due to liability issues and the likelihood of being sued. When people begin working in the professional workspace, their well being is in your hands. That's a huge responsibility because really, it's a matter of life and death. At the core of it, nobody wants to be responsible for an employee's death. The way to increase safety standards is to help them, help themselves.
Basic common sense
For the most part of every working day, employees just need to use their common sense to avoid getting hurt. Although it might seem like badgering or even babysitting, you have to have a talk with employees every now and again reminding them of the basic things to not do. For example, if you have a manufacturing facility there are some things that are obviously dangerous. Conveyor belts should not be stepped over, or arms moved over them. Nor should your workers have long hair that is not properly restrained so that they don’t get trapped in moving machinery parts. There are lines for forklifts and other lifting machines that should be kept clear of pedestrians at all times. Your employees should be wearing hard hats when they are walking through the area of a warehouse where there are shelves of packages in storage. These are the simple common sense things you should remind employees to adhere to.
In an office, even though the dangers are significantly less you still need to every now and then, remind workers of what not to do. Don’t walk around with your shoelaces untied, don’t walk over loose wiring, don’t put your hands and fingers into the printer or plugs, and don’t spill liquids near the computers and other technological equipment. It's so basic that it hurts just to mention, but if you can keep reminding your employees once a fortnight it will keep them sharp.
Departments and differing standards
Where major accidents occur is when workers from one department, are not properly carrying themselves in another department. One of the best examples of this is when someone from the research and development department ventures into where the marketing team are doing their thing. They could be shooting a small video with lighting, boom mics, video cameras and lots of other things. Not being careful to avoid wires, not knocking over cameras, and not disturbing the set where they are could purposely spill water or anything that is out of the ordinary can cause an accident to happen. It's just a blunder that could have been avoided by respecting what another department does.
Perhaps an even better example is the manufacturing facility and the departments that are not working or familiar with this department. Before they ever enter into the warehouse or facility, they will need to behave like guests. Avoiding zones with large machines and vehicles unless it's part of the tasks at hand. They will need to not step into the production line where there are tools being used by workers. Conflicts between supervisors, managers and department heads can be avoided altogether if this is stuck to.
Basic emergency aid training
All employees need to be protected from the dangers at work, and what better way to make sure this happens than teaching them to react in medical emergency situations? Nowadays it is the employer’s responsibility to make sure there are things in the office and or facility that is destined for immediate medical attention. Things like a well-organized and structured first aid kit are essential in every single place of work. Controlling bleeding is the primary concern most of the time so bandages, turner kits and band-aids are the main pieces of equipment you will need.
However basic emergency care education for all the employees can be done via various training programs. For helping somebody breathe again, you should look at implementing a CPR certification online program. The course will only cost around $12 per person which is an absolute bargain considering the vital importance of starting someone’s heart and lungs over again is. The course is for both adults and for use on children also and you’ll also learn how to use an automated external defibrillator.
For basic recovery posture, your employees can learn the recovery positions for various injuries. For injuries to the head, the person must lay on their side, with their head on one arm stretched out. The other arm is resting close to them, and their knee of the outside leg is brought up to stomach height. The other leg is stretched out fully. This helps circulation and also puts the systems in a rest mode.
On the other hand, for someone that has a cut or stabbing injury that is causing a rapid loss of blood, they should be put on their back, with their head stretched upward so their airway is clear. Tilt their head to the side if they need to vomit blood or any other liquid. Raise their legs so the heart doesn’t have to work so hard to pump blood around their body, and allow their diaphragm to relax also. Tightly tie a belt around their legs or arm where the cut it will also help to prevent blood loss.
The engulfing possibility
Fire is a big worry of many businesses for a multitude of reasons. For one the threat to life is a big factor of renewing and checking your fire prevention procedures. If you haven’t already got procedures that are. The other is the large-scale damage that fires can cause. This means that not only is a large part of your business going to go literally up in flames, and your offices, tools and facilities going to be useless, but the cost to repair or buy new properties and tools is going to be huge.
The other side to fires is the loss of your safety reputation. No doubt large fires especially those that rip through businesses are going to make it to the front desk of the media. Clients and customers alike won’t be too impressed that a fire caused death or mass destruction of your premises.
For every 30 or so meters, you should have a fire extinguisher and or fire blanket. Preferably you’ll have both. The reason for 30 meters is, this kind of distance is the average you should use to have safety equipment because fires may cut off parts of your office or building. Rather than having no other safety equipment aside from one area, you have multiple checkpoints where you can get a fire extinguisher to control the blaze. It's also good for workers that might be trapped. You have to think of these kinds of scenarios and figure out what would help those that are trying to get out and those who need to battle their weight out. General training of your employees for them to quickly react to a fire alarm by evacuating in an orderly fashion. Managers should be checking their workers off the list outside upon name calling.
Don’t be broad
For a small business following safety standards can be a chore as it does cost to have the latest equipment and training. However, if you intend to maintain your reputation as being a business that is professional both externally and internally, then you cannot be broad. For your specific business requirements, you should be the main factor for which you go about your safety precautions by. If you use machines that drill or use plasma cutters, you need to learn how to treat injuries related to those kinds of wounds that are caused by such machines. Give your employees training that will help them react medically to a fellow colleague such as how to stop someone from going into shock and how to treat burns etc.
Firstly basic common sense should rule the day for the most part. Not walking on uneven or unstable platforms is obvious, and not reaching over conveyor belts is another. Keep reminding your employees to be mindful and this will keep them aware of not making silly mistakes. Training them in basic medical care can end up saving someone’s life if and when the situation calls for it, making it a priority for your business.