On average, a worker can expect to spend about 90,000 hours at the office. That’s a lot of time between someone’s first day on the job and the last day before retirement. If they’re lucky, most of those work hours will be relatively productive and happy. If you’re an employer, you have a special responsibility to the people who work for you. Sure, you want to pay them a competitive rate, but there’s far more to it than that. To really set up your office to succeed, you also have to provide certain types of workplace training. Your workers may not like the idea of taking time out of their day for training, but it’s essential. Here are two types of workplace training you can’t afford to ignore.
If an employee is taking a lot of sticky notes from the office supply closet, that may not seem like an ethical crisis to you. While it’s true that you shouldn’t generally hang out by the supply closet to demand that people give you a reason for taking three pens rather than one, employee theft can become a big problem if you don’t pay attention to it.
The misuse of company resources can also come into play if, for instance, you hand someone the company credit card to buy supplies for a party later that day. If you tell them to get a couple of cases of beer at the liquor store, remind them to bring back a receipt. Document everything so you won’t be surprised by any extra expenses later.
That’s just one of several topics that workplace ethics training is designed to cover. It also covers things like illegal streaming at work. Believe it or not, some workers don’t realize that they should not pirate the latest season of Game of Thrones while they’re on company time.
Finally, there’s the sticky category of corporate fraud. Corporate misconduct is so common nowadays that you can even find lists ranking the biggest corporate scandals of 2018. It can involve things like falsifying documents or destroying records. It may even involve lying to or otherwise deceiving customers on a large scale. For instance, Wells Fargo bank had to pay a $575 million settlement after employees opened fake accounts to reach outrageously lofty sales goals.
The company has to act ethically on all fronts. It can’t just be something that you push on your lower-level employees. If the company culture is bad at the top, then it’s eventually going to seep down to every level.
Your company must abide by certain safety guidelines. On the federal level, you’ll have to answer to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration if, for instance, the only exit in the building is often blocked. But other states have more stringent regulations that you must abide by. That’s why workplace safety training is so essential.
Safety regulation training should include developing a plan for every possible type of emergency. Fire safety plans are among the most common. Depending on where your office is located, you may also want to develop emergency plans for tornadoes, earthquakes, and hurricanes.
You would like to think that you have level-headed employees who will respond well to a potential disaster. But in emergencies, many people freeze up and panic. To avoid such a situation, you should run emergency drills every few months. Having an established protocol helps people focus. And the sooner they focus, the quicker everyone can get to safety.