Written by Aaron Cooney —
Alberta’s COVID-19 vaccine program is in full swing and over 4.5 million doses have been administered.
We hope the distribution of these materials signals the pandemic is near its end. As the dust begins to settle it is the responsibility of governing bodies, research groups, and businesses to assess the many impacts of the last two years and how to function moving forward. Rightfully overshadowed by the more immediate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, people and businesses see a shift towards consciousness. Customers are more aware of health and illness. Mindful customers favor a business with more effective and consistent health measures over another comparable businesses that fails to show the same level of competence.
Business owners will be met with the challenge of meeting the new expectations of customers post COVID-19. We have seen that mindful business owners have specific protocols in place that generally exceed government regulation. Some businesses will continue to go beyond the bare minimum and set a precedent of “best practice” for all other groups.
Many Albertan businesses have come up with unique and effective disinfecting practices, fit for their establishment. These efforts will continue to be considered valuable to mindful customers. While many people care about the efficacy and potential health risks associated with disinfecting protocols, if the businesses that are doing better do not advertise as such, these efforts may go unnoticed. Another new challenge for the mindful business owners of Alberta is to effectively showcase their efforts for safer business and reach the customers who favor them above other businesses. Basic and general steps to creating a platform for one’s safer disinfecting protocols are included below.
Have the Right
The most important component of effectively showcasing efforts for safer business is consistency. For the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond the faces of responsible business will have scientifically based disinfecting protocols done consistently, and as per policy, following associated best practices.
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Below is a standard assertion made in company policy.
In any successful establishment ownership and management have responsibilities towards the safety of customers and employees. It is the responsibility of individuals in charge to provide the necessary materials, knowledge, and expertise for employees to create a safe and welcoming environment. Likewise, employees are to use these provided resources to the best of their ability and in accordance with policy.
Considering the shared responsibilities of management and staff, it should be surprising that many business owners do not know what disinfecting products are being used on site. It may also seem unprofessional for those applying chemicals to areas with foot traffic to be lacking in knowledge of best practice.
To avoid these issues, management should be familiar with their disinfecting products and materials, know associated dwell times and best practices for chemicals used in the work place, and these practices should be outlined in writing and kept on site.
Have Signage on Display
Employers should have disinfection protocols on site for employees to reference. If this information is available for employees, how may a business advertise the efficacy of disinfecting protocols to patrons. For example, a common way a café may provide a health-conscious image for customers is to wipe off debit machines with disinfectant between customers. Due to the necessary dwell times associated with disinfection, the efficacy of this in terms of managing the risk of exposure to viral particles is debatable. It is hard to say if this adequately protects against microorganisms, but many customers will see this and find it comforting.
A more genuine way to comfort mindful customers is to include signage in visible areas. Tell the people walking through the door what is being done to keep them safe. Speak to the efficacy of disinfecting products or the diligence of staff in disinfecting protocols. This can also be done through social media, blog posts, and word of mouth.