3 min read | 19 March, 2019 By Rachael Down
Warning: This post is not for the faint-hearted. You'll be eating your lunch away from the desk from now on. Anti-bacterial wipes at the ready...
Did you know that an average office desk harbours 400-times more germs than your toilet seat? Us neither. As spring is just around the corner, we thought it apt to take a look into spring cleaning and office hygiene.
We'll dust off the germ-problem areas, explain how to tackle employee hygiene and sprinkle some top tips to help you and your team get ship-shape and shiny. Tidy office, tidy mind.
Let's roll up the rubber gloves and get to work.
And by desk, we mean the whole office. Dishing the dirt on the horrors of UK office cleanliness, a recent report reveals some stomach-turning stats. Brace yourselves:
A staff survey by printerland.co.uk uncovered that two-thirds of employees failed to follow their office-hygiene guidelines and one in 10 will never clean their desk. What? You mean your office doesn't have Hygiene Guidelines? No problem. Feel free to reuse ours.
Keep those bugs at bay and encourage clean-working habits:
Steve is a great employee. He works smart, acts cool and lives and breathes the company ethos. He takes care of himself by making sure he eats right, sleeps enough and has enough down-time. He's recently added exercise to his health routine and now enjoys the challenge of a quick run at lunchtime.
Steve's colleagues, who are slightly vexed by his new hobby, have spoken to their HR department.
"For the last couple of weeks, there's been a horrid smell lingering around the support department and it's seriously off-putting. We think it's Steve but don't know how to raise this with him. What do we do? He's such a great guy but he doesn't half pong."
Honesty is key here. If you were Steve's HR or line-manager, what would you do? Ours would waft their wand of compassionate honesty and air out any potential pitfalls. In other words, set up an informal, private meeting with Steve and express your concerns.
Remember that we all come in different shapes and sizes, therefore smells and hygiene habits tend to differ too. No one wants to be Smelly Steve. And no one wants to be talked about behind their backs. Step up to the plate and ask Steve if there's anything he needs help with.
By asking the questions that centre around how you can help him, you'll improve trust while showing your team that you can tackle embarrassing situations professionally. Remember what that H stands for in HR...
We'd recommend stocking up on some hygiene essentials for those unexpected moments. Offer hand-sanitiser and moisturising creams for the desk and keep a couple of cans of deodorant and some sanitary wear in the toilets. #Justincase.