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If you run a business of any kind, then safety should be one of your top priorities. Even if you have a small business that seems like it does not have any dangerous elements, you need to stay vigilant. Accidents and mishaps can happen at any time, causing injury to your staff and to your budget. Here are some of the best workplace safety tips that every small business should follow.

Create a Culture of Safety

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Just because your business is small does not mean that you shouldn’t be professional. Make sure that you instill a culture of safety amongst your staff. This means providing training for anything that might be remotely dangerous, as well as on overall business safety. Communicate with your staff the importance of taking precautions and showing them what might be unsafe or bad for their health. If you do not encourage a culture of safety, then you will not get complete buy-in, which could lead to disaster down the road.

Building Maintenance

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Make sure that your building is always in good repair, and get any problems fixed as soon as you notice them. This is especially true if you have trouble with the ventilation. Your air ducts and air filters should be cleaned and cleared out on a regular basis. Make sure that mold and bacteria are not allowed to build up anywhere within the building. These things can seriously affect someone’s respiratory system or exacerbate existing problems.

Maintenance also includes repairing anything that could be a tripping hazard, or that causes exposed wires. Keep your parking lot and walkways clear of snow, and remove any debris as soon as you notice it. All of this will not just keep you and your staff safe, but it will keep your property looking its best, too.

Business Insurance

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Even if you take all possible precautions, there is still a chance that someone could get hurt. If so, make sure that you have protected them with insurance. The right insurance can help to pay for lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering. That way, not only are injured employees getting the help they deserve, but it’s not coming directly out of your budget. Make sure to choose insurance that fits specifically with your type of business. For example, if you have a cleaning business, then visit here to get cleaning business insurance. That way you will be covered for risks that are specific to your type of workplace.

Regular Safety Checks

Every month, perform a check around your facility to make sure that everything remains as safe as possible. You should be checking on your fire extinguishers to make sure they are working, and testing your emergency lights as well. Anything that is related to your safety plan should be tested and inspected. That way you are not caught by surprise when you end up needing them and they do not function. If there is something that isn’t working, then have it repaired immediately so that you are prepared.

First Aid Kits

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If someone gets injured, then they should not have to go far to get the quick treatment they need. Place well-stocked first aid kits around the building in convenient spots so that they can be accessed as soon as possible. Make sure that their locations are well-labeled and that everyone in your workplace is trained on where they are and how to use their contents. On your regular safety inspections you can also refill anything that has been used during the previous month so that you never run out of something.

Fire Safety

There should be a designated spot outside of your building that serves as a meeting spot if you need to evacuate for a fire. It should be clearly defined and everyone who works with you should be aware of where it is. Entrust one staff member as the fire safety specialist who makes sure that everyone follows the evacuation plan. Make sure to have regular fire drills so that everyone will act as needed should the unthinkable happen.

You should have local requirements for fire extinguishers. They should be placed around the building so that one can always be easily accessed. This is especially important if you have a kitchen or heavy vehicles such as forklifts.

Reduce Stress

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The mental health of your employees is just as important as physical health. Running and working for a small business can be incredibly stressful. Managers and owners should do whatever they can to reduce it to protect employees’ psychological health. Work/life balance is important, and allowing time off for family commitments, personal days, and mental health days can help.

You will not be able to reduce the stress of the job, but providing outlets can help. Implement an open door policy so that employees feel comfortable talking to you about issues they are having. Keeping things inside will only increase stress and potentially lead to outbursts. This is not only good for health, but it’s good for productivity as well. People who are stressed may rush through their work or not be as focused as they should. This can lead to mistakes and accidents.

Training

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Invite a professional into your business to provide training that is specific to your workplace. They can go through hazards that you may not have thought of, and ensure that everyone understands their responsibilities. Your new hire orientation should always involve safety training. There are many free resources online such as articles and videos that you can use as part of your training and to keep as a knowledge base. Ignorance should never be an excuse for unsafe actions in your workplace.

Don’t take safety for granted. Even if your business is small, there are still ways that employees and clients can get hurt or worse. Make safety a priority, and follow these tips to protect everyone. Not only will you keep everyone safe, but you can protect your business against lawsuits and additional costs related to worker injuries.