Covid-19 really changed the game in terms of health and hygiene in the workplace. And with the impact of the pandemic still fresh in people’s minds, the focus on keeping safe hasn’t waned.
This has, understandably, led to some concerns when it comes to coworking. Being in close proximity to a fresh batch of strangers each time you want to get some work done can be off-putting.
In some cases, these fears are warranted. Some coworking spaces have ditched their previous safety measures now that the pandemic isn’t so much of an issue. However, others, including Circle Hub, still prioritize health and hygiene, and will continue to do so moving forward.
If you’re intrigued by the idea of coworking but are worried about how to keep yourself healthy while doing so, read on as we share some top tips on how to navigate health and hygiene in a coworking space.
Make Sure That Your Coworking Space is Professionally Cleaned Regularly
Let’s start with one of the most important aspects of health and hygiene; cleanliness. The cleaner a workspace is, the lower your chances of coming into contact with harmful germs. This means that, overall, the healthier you’ll be.
When it comes down to it, most coworking spaces will have their workspaces and common areas cleaned on a regular basis. Whether this is done by an external cleaning company or an in-house department, an in-depth clean will keep germs to a minimum.
With that said, it’s worth keeping an eye on how often your coworking space is professionally cleaned. Some spaces will have a cleaning schedule posted up somewhere, making this easy to see. If you can’t find one, ask your community manager for more details on your coworking space’s cleaning procedures.
If you aren’t happy with this, it could be time to move on. Look for a coworking space that ensures cleanliness at all times, like we do at Circle Hub. Our cleaning crew ensures that workspaces and common areas remain hygienic at all times. They also spend extra time disinfecting high-traffic areas and items.
Prioritize Personal Hygiene
Personal hygiene is crucial at all times, but becomes even more so when working at a coworking space. Even if that space is professionally cleaned daily, you’ll still be coming into contact with a number of germs as you go about your day. This makes it vital to know how to minimize risk through good personal hygiene.
The first step is to ensure that you frequently wash your hands. Your hands are the part of your body that’s most likely to pick up new germs. This is simply due to the various surfaces that they touch throughout the day. Regularly washing those germs away will prevent them from moving past your hands and causing health problems. Another option would be to kill them with some hand sanitizer.
Speaking of hand sanitizer, this is something that everyone used to carry around during the Covid-19 pandemic. Sure, there’s no longer such a great need for it. However, there’s also nothing wrong with sanitizing your desk if you’re particularly concerned about germs. A quick wipe-down is all that’s needed to keep things clean and give you peace of mind.
Of course, if you aren’t feeling well, then it goes without saying that you should avoid visiting your coworking space. After all, you wouldn’t want others to be in close proximity to you if they had a possibly contagious illness of any sort. So, it’s important that you show this same respect to others. Plus, if you’re unwell, then this means that your immune system has taken a dive. This then leaves you susceptible to picking up illnesses that are even more severe from other people. Staying at home until you’re feeling better is the safest way to go.
Consider Booking Yourself a Private Office Space
Whether it be the winter flu or a stomach bug, what should you do if you’re concerned about an illness that has been making the rounds but you desperately need to work at your coworking space?
Well, some coworking spaces, including ours, give members the opportunity to rent out a private office suite by the hour. Therefore, instead of sitting at a desk surrounded by others, you’ll have a room all to yourself.
At Circle Hub, our private offices vary in size, with the smallest containing just one desk. This is ideal if you’re working on your own and don’t want to splash out for a larger space. With that said, rates are very reasonable, making this something that many of our members often indulge in!
Invest in Your Own Supplies
A coworking space will often have various supplies available for members to use. From cups at the water cooler to office stationary, these are the little perks that make coworking so convenient.
However, if you’re concerned about health and hygiene, it would be worth investing in your own set of supplies rather than using those that are provided by your coworking space. Although your coworking space will (hopefully!) ensure that all of those items have been properly cleaned in between uses, it can sometimes be beneficial to make sure that you’re the only one who’s using a certain item.
While you can’t exactly lug a printer or a microwave back and forth with you each day, smaller supplies of your own, from coffee mugs to empty water bottles, will still help to minimize the number of germs you come into contact with.
Take Regular Breaks
All too often, when ‘health’ is discussed, physical health is the focus. However, mental health is equally important. Ensuring that your mind is in the right place will not only help your physical health, but your productivity at work will also soar.
So, if you want to keep your health at its finest, make sure that you take regular breaks while working. When working at a coworking space, it can sometimes be all too easy to soak up the inspirational ambiance around you and immerse yourself in a project. Next thing you know, several hours have passed and you’ve barely moved! This isn’t good for your health, both physical or mental.
That’s why, at Circle Hub, we encourage members to take time out to unwind. How? By giving you plenty to do in this downtime. If you’re feeling peckish, you can head to our break room and either make the most of our complimentary refreshments or whip up a little snack of your own. Alternatively, if you need to release some steam, get your body moving at our on-site gym. Likewise, if your mind needs to switch off and relax, we also have a gaming room for our members to enjoy.
Another great way to spend a short break is to simply hang out in one of our common areas. Lounge on a sofa and enjoy getting to know some of our other members. Making new connections can be so motivational – a quick conversation may be all that’s needed to give you the ideas that you need to take a project to the next level.
Look For Spacious Workspaces
Coworking spaces vary hugely. Some are undeniably cramped, leaving people touching elbows with their neighbors. Not only is this uncomfortable, but having a high density of people in a room also increases the risk of germs spreading.
If your current coworking space is lacking enough room for its members, it’s time for an upgrade. Look for an alternative that offers large and spacious workspaces. This way, members can spread out and work without having anyone else breathing down their necks.
That’s exactly what you’ll find at Circle Hub. In fact, with so many different working areas to choose from, it’s never difficult to find a spot where you can enjoy some peace and privacy.
Ergonomic Furniture Can Be Helpful
Whether you’re working from home, a traditional office, or a coworking space, spending hours hunched over a desk can leave you with posture- and mobility-related health problems. Ensuring that your coworking space offers plenty of room rather than cramping you in is one way to help with this. However, ergonomic furniture is also another feature to keep an eye out for.
Ergonomic furniture has been designed to offer optimal support to the body. It reduces the amount of strain that’s placed on the neck, back, and hips. These are the areas that are most commonly affected due to poor posture at work.
Although this may not be a health-related dealbreaker in the way that the lack of regular professional cleaning may be, ergonomic furniture would definitely be a health perk to consider when choosing a coworking space.
An Appropriate Pandemic Response
Although life may now be going back to normal after the peak of the pandemic, there’s no guarantee that something like that won’t happen again. As a result, many companies now have measures in place that detail their response in the event of another pandemic.
Ideally, you want to be able to keep using your coworking space during times like that, although safety and hygiene will become even more of a priority. So, make sure that the coworking space that you’re with also holds these aspects in high regard.
For example, simply rearranging the layout of a workspace while limiting the number of people who are able to use it at one time can go a long way in preventing the spread of viruses and other germs. Setting up screens in between desks can make a big difference too. Good ventilation is key as well, which is something that many coworking spaces quickly improved upon during the height of Covid-19.
A coworking space that already has all of these measures prepared is much more likely to stay up and running if another pandemic were to happen, while keeping you safe at the same time.
There’s no denying that some coworking spaces leave plenty to be desired when it comes to health and hygiene. Meanwhile, other companies, including Circle Hub, strive to go the extra mile to keep members safe and healthy. Although this isn’t something that’s usually prioritized when choosing a coworking space, it’s definitely worth keeping in mind. After all, the healthier you are, the better your work will be!
Want to know more about the health and safety measures at Circle Hub’s coworking spaces? Click here to book a tour today!