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As the world tries to cope up with the pandemic, it is important to know the actions we can take in retail to avoid and prevent the spread of COVID-19. This course includes the general safety guidelines when returning to work, disinfecting the workplace, coping with work-related stress, and dealing with customer aggression due to safety policies imposed in your stores.
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COVID-19 Return to Work Guidelines
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a virus called SARS-COV-2 which causes the following sypmtoms: Shortness of breath Fever Chills Muscle Pain Sore Throat Loss of taste or smell
Recent studies indicate that even people who are not showing symptoms can spread the virus.
As suggested by recent studies, it is possible for you to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus and touching your eyes, nose, or mouth afterwards.
**As a retail worker, your sources of exposure to the virus may include: ** Prolonged periods of close contact with customers with COVID-19 Touching your nose, mouth, and eyes after handling cash or merchandise that customers with COVID-19 have touched.
In this lesson, you will learn the safety guidelines you can follow to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as you return back to work during the pandemic -- are you ready?
Limit close contact with others and maintain at least 6 feet of distance, whenever possible.
Wear the appropriate face coverings such as face masks and face shields within store premises.
Disinfect and clean frequently touched surfaces such as work stations, cash registers, payment terminals, door handles, and tables.
Avoid contact with body fluids. Use tissues when you cough, sneeze, or touch your face and immediately throw used tissues in the trash.
Practice proper hand hygiene.
Refrain from touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
**Proper Hand Hygiene ** It is important to remember that properly washing your hands is an infection control measure that you can do to avoid getting sick. With appropriate hand hygiene, gloves won't be needed for workers who are not involved in food preparation. Washing your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds helps get rid of unseen germs. This prevents you from getting sick, or if you are sick, prevents the spread of germs to others. While an alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be used during times that you have no access to water or soap, it cannot be used as a substitute for handwashing.
What are the things you can do while transacting with customers that will help reduce the spread of the virus? Select all that applies
What to do in case you get sick
If you have a high fever, cough, or other symptoms, immediately notify your manager and stay home to recover.
It helps not only to prevent your condition from worsening, but it also prevents you from spreading the virus in the workplace!
Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home -- follow the steps in the next slide to care for yourself and to help protect other people in your home and community.
Cleaning and Disinfecting the Workplace
**Why is it important? **
SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, can be reduced and killed from surfaces, objects, and hands if the right products are used correctly.
The virus mainly **spreads from one person to another **but it can also be spread by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it.
It is also important to know that cleaning and disinfecting are two different things. While cleaning refers to the removal of the visible dirt, sanitizing kills the germs through the use of chemicals on the other hand.
Cleaning and disinfecting reduce the risk of spreading infection by killing germs on surfaces that people frequently touch.
Always read and follow the instructions indicated on the disinfectant's label.
Wear eye and skin protection for potential splash hazards.
Ensure adequate ventilation in the area where the disinfectant will be used.
use no more than the amount indicated in the label's instructions.
Avoid mixing chemical products.
Label diluted cleaning solutions so it's easy to identify them.
Never drink, eat, or breathe in these products as they can cause poisoning and serious harm.
Coping with Job Stress and Building Resilience
As the COVID-19 Pandemic happens, the majority of the working population may agree that it has changed the way they work, whether they work in a store, or from home.
The fear, anxiety and other strong emotions that one may feel about this new disease can be overwhelming which may lead to burnout. Burnout is the feeling of energy depletion and exhaustion that reduces one's professional efficacy -- often caused by workplace stress.
How you cope with this kind of stress can affect not only your well-being but as well as the well-being of the people you care about -- your household, workplace, and community.
During this pandemic, it is important to recognize what stress looks like -- begin to take the steps to build your resilience, manage job stress, and know where to go if you need help. This lesson contains the knowledge you need in order to do them. Are you ready? Proceed to learn more!
Before doing anything, remember that it is important to: Recognize the symptoms of stress that you may be experiencing, and Know the common work-related factors that may add to stress in a pandemic
What are the symptoms of stress that you might experience? The feeling of irritation, anger, or denial Feeling nervous, uncertain, or anxious Lacking motivation Feeling tired, overwhelmed, or burned out Feeling depressed, or sad Having a hard time sleeping Having trouble concentrating
Things you can practice to build resiliency to help manage workplace stress
By creating a daily routine similar to your schedule before the pandemic (if possible) help increase your sense of control. You can try:
Keeping a regular sleep schedule
Take breaks from work to stretch, exercise or check in with your colleagues, family, or friends
Spend time outdoors, you can either be physically active or simply relax
Keep doing the things you enjoy during non-work hours
Dealing with Customer Aggression
As everyone adapts to the new normal during this pandemic, workplace violence due to customer aggression may become common in the industry as we impose safety rules which might be misunderstood by our customers.
**What is workplace violence? ** Workplace violence is violent acts that include physical assault or threats of assault directed toward persons at work or on duty.
Some instances of workplace violence from customers may be related to the policies and practices we impose in our stores to prevent the spread of COVID-19, such as: Customers and workers should wear face masks Asking customers to follow social distancing rules Setting limits on the number of customers allowed in our store at a time
In this lesson, you will learn about the different types of workplace violence and the strategies you can practice as an employee to limit them. Ready? Proceed to continue!
What are the three common types of workplace violence? Select all that applies
Hands on head As a person becomes angry, frustration builds up. Since anger is an emotion processed by the brain, the mind will attempt to release the emotion when filled with hate. One attempt the mind does is to subconsciously instruct the person to raise their hands to their head. Their hands may physically touch or come very close to touching the head. They might rub their head and scalp and have their hands clenched to "grasp a hold of the anger".
** Hand gestures** Hand gestures such as clenched fists, wringing hands, or pointing fingers are signs of anger to watch out for to avoid potential physical assault. A person performing these actions may be preparing their hands to fight or throw a punch by loosening their muscles and tendons. Hand wringing is another subconscious action that people may use to "grasp" anger.
** Removing clothing** Removing clothing materials is another way for a person to release built-up anger and frustration. By shedding articles of clothing, the person attempts to "lighten their load". Another reason for a person to remove articles of clothing is to free their body from restrictions -- simply imagine, it's easier to throw a punch when wearing a T-shirt instead of wearing a hoodie, right?
Aggressive lower body stance People preparing to fight usually position the lower portion of their bodies in a stance that is suitable for fighting or fleeing. Their fight may be positioned shoulder-width apart and their knees bend slightly, allowing them to punch or push using the force of their entire upper bodies. Their bodies may also blade to their strong side; a right-handed person will move to their left side forward toward their target while their right backside is at an angle and the opposite happens for left-handed people.
Preventing verbal altercations from becoming physical assault Now that you know the types of nonverbal cues that may lead to violence and the type of violence that may occur in our stores, it's time for you to learn how to react to them. Through a nonviolent response such as conflict resolution, we can de-escalate misunderstandings about the store's safety policies from resulting in physical assault. Conflict Resolution is the process of finding a peaceful end to a conflict or argument. In the next slide, you'll learn about different conflict resolution practices when engaging customers who misunderstood or intend not to follow the safety policies imposed in our stores.
What is conflict resolution?
Preemptive actions to limit workplace violence related to COVID-19 safety policies
Post signs in the store that let customers know about policies for wearing masks, social distancing, and the maximum number of people allowed in the store.
If you have access to your designated store's website or social media pages, advertise the COVID-19 related policies that we impose in our stores so customers know what to expect when they visit.
If the staffing permits, have two colleagues pair up to encourage customers to follow COVID-19 prevention policies imposed in the store.
Know where security systems such as cameras, panic buttons, and alarms are placed and learn how and when to use them.
Identify safe areas in the store where you and your colleagues can go should you feel that you are in danger. These can be rooms that: Locks from the inside Has a second exit route Has a phone or silent alarm
**Everyday Preventive Actions **
As our daily lifestyle adapts to the changes caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic, it is important to remember what are the preventive actions you can take.
This lesson covers the actions that you can practice not only once you've returned to work but as well as your every day living.
We'll cover: Knowing how the virus spreads Proper handwashing Avoiding close contact Covering your mouth and nose around others Cleaning and disinfecting has Monitoring your health Ready? Hit that continue button to learn more!
**Covering your mouth and nose around others **
One of the main reasons why we should use face masks or other facial covers is because it is possible for you to spread COVID-19 even if you don't feel sick.
**Remember: ** The mask is meant to protect the people around you in case you are infected!
Medical experts recommend everyone to wear a mask in public settings and around people who do not live in your household, especially if social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
Masks should not be placed on: Young children under the age of 2 Anyone who has trouble breathing Unconscious or incapacitated people
When sneezing or coughing... Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue If not available, use the inside of your elbow but do not spit Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
Lastly, continue maintaining a 6-feet distance between other people even if you're wearing a mask -- the mask is not a substitute for social distancing!