We are all hoping to get things back to normal as fast as possible. Dare I say, we are hoping to get back to work. I miss going into the office each day and working with my clients for sure. So what are the post pandemic changes needed for your local business?
As a small business we only have between 4 – 6 people in our office most of the time. However, we share a kitchen with Herr and Company so that would double the number of people we come into contact with daily. We also have lots of visitors to our art exhibit (empty at the moment), product representatives, train enthusiasts, and of course our clients. So as the possibility of going back to working at the office seems to be getting safer, I am wondering what we should do to protect each other. Of course we will consider wearing masks. Our desks are 6′ apart already, but should we add dividers? How many bottles of hand sanitizer are too much?
Something as simple as doors has become something of a question. Here is a blog I wrote about how to pull open a non-latching door without impacting ADA compliance.
I am also looking at screens that could be added such as what you have probably seen at grocery stores. How can those be added in an affordable way and aesthetically pleasing way?
Are temporary screens all we need or should we find something more permanent? Will we start to see more designed solutions or basic (due to economics) and bluntly, ugly solutions?
I am also thinking about restaurants. Of course sitting outside at a local restaurant enjoying the weather and handing out with friends sounds wonderful. However, should we have shelters around our outdoor tables?
How close should tables be to one another? Should there be screens between each table and between the table and the server? Should businesses require masks for all staff? customers? Will we start to see screens at all cashiers?
What about commonly touched office equipment? Who will be willing to go make copies when we get back to the office? Will there need to be a bottle of sanitizer next to the copier, refrigerator, microwave?
If sanitizer is going to be everywhere, killing off good and bad germs for our protection – can we please come up with something better looking than this?
Our world has forever changed. One we know that we can stop everything in order to help each other stay healthy. We know that our world is fragile. I believe we will also be very aware of those around us and appreciate our times together more. Architecturally I am not sure of the impact yet. I imagine there will be a lot of innovation coming into the industry to help protect each other while not creating ADA obstacles or making it feel like we each have to live in a bubble.
For now, wash your hands, use sanitizer when you cannot wash your hands, and trust the scientists and medical experts – they are working hard to figure out the right solutions to keep us all safe.