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Return To Work: 8 Things Occupants Don’t Trust To Be Safe

Facility managers may think they’re doing all they can to welcome occupants back to work safely, but they are overlooking these key aspects

Masked co-workers

According to a recent survey, 86 percent of workers say they don’t trust management to safely lead them back to work. As offices all across the U.S. reopen and welcome back occupants, have facility managers done enough to prepare for a safe working environment? Probably not.

In this short video, Bo Mitchell, President of 911 Consulting, outlines 8 critical things that facility managers have likely overlooked when creating a reopening plan. Failure to address these items will lead to dangerous workplaces.

Here’s a preview:

For every complex problem there’s a simple solution that’s always wrong. And the most overlooked issue at work is trust as far as bringing people back to work. Trusting you as the boss because we have the research to say almost all of your employees don’t trust you. In this regard, why don’t they trust you?

Well we looked at these and we already said as important as these things are, employees fully expect these. That’s not where the trust issues lie. Why they don’t trust you — well here having talked to my hundreds and I have 350 clients I’ve served over the last 20 years. I’ve asked them what they think are the issues that engender this lack of trust on part of employees.

Let me take you through these eight first:

The commute. It’s one thing to tell everybody that the workplace they’ve come to is just hunky-dory and safer. But now you’re going to ask them to commute on a train, on a bus, car pooling. I have many headquarters companies that have buses that go to central places and pick up employees and bring them and then take them home at night. What does that look like? Have you really addressed what’s going on there?

The second thing they don’t trust about you is policing your procedures. You can tell them and maybe they believe you that they have that you have all the procedures necessary to make it squeaky clean and that they can trust you. But who’s policing them? Is building reception? If you’re in a multi-tenant situation or if you own the building, what does that look like as far as walking into the lobby is concerned? As far as identifying who you are as an employee, a visitor, a contractor? And are you screening people? Is that a good idea? Maybe you don’t think it’s necessary anymore. Maybe you do and maybe it’s something you do in order to build trust. As far as temperature taking is concerned, is it analog, is it digital? How about elevators? If you’re on a multi-story situation, how does that all work and have you told your people how that’s all going to work? Are these liberally spread throughout your workplace?

And what about visitors? You’ve done everything right about your employees and contractors — what about your visitors who could potentially be vaccinated or not, and verify carriers who could infect people? You’ve seen this at retail — is this something you want to do for your workplace? Maybe you think this is over the top but it’s really good stuff as far as social distancing is concerned.

Now maybe you think, “Well your employees are going to say, you know rebel, that this is somehow way overbearing.” My answer is we’re trying to keep everybody safe and it’s in their own best interest to listen up and follow your instructions and also a demonstration that they can trust that you’ve thought all this thing through in order to keep them safe because this is about them.

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