Ergonomics has become a popular topic lately. With workplaces straddling between home and office environments, employees are learning what keeps them safe and comfortable during the workday. Managers need to pay attention to employee comfort and safety, which can help improve work-life as people return to the office. Even if you don’t manage a traditional office and work elsewhere, such as a hair salon or retail store, you can still prioritize ergonomics to help improve the employee experience. Keep reading to learn how managers can help create an ergonomic workplace, no matter the business.
Learn Basic Ergonomics
If your employees don’t know what ergonomics is, they can’t learn how to advocate for their health and comfort. As the manager, you should take a proactive approach and learn about basic ergonomics to educate your employees. The formal definition of ergonomics is the study of workers’ efficiency in their working environment. Many people informally understand ergonomics as improved efficiency tied to the safety and comfort of a work environment. For example, an ergonomic desk chair that prevents back and neck pain will help employees work more efficiently. While they may not notice the improved efficiency, they will notice the lack of pain. They’ll associate the ergonomic desk chair with improved safety and comfort, not improved efficiency, even though it helps both.
Solve Ergonomic Problems
After learning about ergonomics and educating your employees, don’t wait for them to report a problem. Search out potential issues in your workplace and consider how you can ergonomically improve them. If you’re not sure how to ascertain whether something is an ergonomic problem or not, ask the people who use the space the most. Your employees will appreciate your humility and your help.
Provide Ergonomic Tools
You can’t just preach the importance of ergonomics, make a few general changes, and expect efficiency to improve continuously. The tools your employees use daily, whether computer mouses or hair shears, also affect ergonomics. If possible, replace old tools with ergonomic ones. Ergonomic mouses, ergonomic hair shears, and other ergonomic tools will improve your employees’ daily lives. If you can’t afford replacements, teach basic stretches and other exercises employees can do at work to help keep their bodies healthy and their work efficient.
Managers can help create an ergonomic workplace through education, problem-solving, and tool provisions. Even if you don’t have the resources to apply ergonomic changes in your office, learning about ergonomics and providing training to your employees will improve workplace efficiency and daily life, no matter what kind of workplace you run.