The Post-COVID Office
The novel Coronavirus outbreak may change a lot of the fundamental ways we traditionally interacted with people. Handshakes are now viewed with a level of suspicion; sharing a public pen feels dirty and dangerous (and not in a cool “James Bond” sort of way). So as your business reopens to the public, what steps can you take to make your clients and prospects feel safe when they step foot in your workspace?
Make safety a priority
In our office, we aim to make safety a priority. This priority is immediately visible to our visitors through lighthearted but clear signage. “We love our clients, which is why we respect personal space. We may not hug you or shake your hand, but that is how we show our love!”. Our office is blessed to have Janet front and center (anyone who has been to our office knows Janet!) greeting folks as they come in and making them feel like family. But as many of our clients know, Janet is hoping for hip surgery in June, so physical contact is out of the question!
Janet reassures our visitors that every effort is being made to keep the office clean and sanitary. She keeps a pack of Clorox Wipes on her desk as a visible reminder of our fight against germs. We also make hand sanitizer available in the lobby and in the rooms where client meetings take place. There is liquid soap and paper towels in our kitchen area for those people who would like to wash their hands.
For the time being, we have a coffee station set up with a single serve coffee maker, disposable paper coffee cups, single pack sugars and creamers. We lay them out before our clients arrive, that way they have to touch as few surfaces as possible.
In the meeting room
In the meeting room, we strive to keep several feet of personal space, and our table surfaces are kept very clean and clear of clutter. If the client needs to fill out paperwork, or personal items such as driver’s licenses need to be copied, our staff will wear gloves or use hand sanitizer in front of the client before touching the items. We also offer clients disposable pens to use (which they can then take with them) and use hand sanitizer before removing the pen carefully from its box.
Takeaways for office safety
Every step you take to ensure your visitor’s safety, and the safety of your staff, will go a long way towards maintaining trust and helping people feel good about reengaging face to face:
- Clear “No Contact” signage
- Readily available hand sanitizer
- Liquid soap and paper towels
- One time use pens
- Disposable coffee cups & safe self serve coffee areas
- Staff diligence
What steps are you taking to promote health in your office? Please be sure to share them with us in our Facebook and LinkedIn comments.