A reader writes: “I noticed that you put a big emphasis on making the worker more productive but do not share many real points. Your response is appreciated.”

Since I try not to endorse specific companies or products I oftentimes struggle with how to recommend processes and systems. The point I am trying to make in stressing effective, product specific training on a regular basis may not be obvious. If a worker is ill or only functioning at 60 percent due to being exposed to dust or chemicals, they cannot be productive. Air quality is very important.

I have been in accounts where I suggested to the supervisor that either they change the dust filter bags on the vacuum cleaners or provide dust masks for the workers. I myself have dust sensitivities that can leave me wheezing with runny nose and eyes. I can assure you that I am not very productive during those times.

Ergonomics can involve not only training one how to lift, mop (think figure eight pattern), limiting stress on the back by utilizing the right tools and other factors. In my workshops, I will oftentimes have the biggest, strongest student come forward. I will give him/her a wet 30 ounce mop in one hand and a wet microfiber flat mop in the other and ask them to hold both at arm’s length for as long as they can. In another exercise, I will have a person hold up an old fashioned upright vacuum cleaner in one hand and hold a back pack handle in the other. This type illustration can be repeated in many different ways.

Safety training and regular reminders is very important since an injured worker either home recuperating or worse still, in the hospital is not going to be very productive. Enough said.

An investment in correct maintenance, training and providing appropriate equipment can go a long ways in keeping your workers productive.

Your comments and feedback are always appreciated. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.