By Alan Wolf, YSN
With COVID-19 sparking up across the country again, the latest good deed from BrandSource member Don’s Appliances couldn’t be timelier.
Following outreach from Don’s HR director Nicole Laudato, the Pittsburgh appliance chain is sharing its comprehensive pandemic protocol guide with fellow members. Compiled by Laudato and the company’s Safety Committee, the 27-page “Safe Work Playbook” addresses everything from face masks and other PPE requirements to self-screening, disinfection practices, and protective delivery and installation procedures.
Tasked with developing the handbook, Laudato, like many businesses and even YSN’s COVID Info Hub crew, began with a blank slate. “The last time I was in a pandemic was never,” she noted, although she became all too familiar with the virus after her son tested positive upon his return from military deployment. (He’s fine now.)
Ultimately, the HR director based the Don’s guide on an open-source safety manual from Lear Corp., the automotive tech manufacturer, and “modified to make it our own.” For example, when delivery personnel found it difficult to breath in a mask while carrying a Sub-Zero-size refrigerator, the PPE mandate was changed to face shields for those situations. Otherwise, as COO Ray McShane is quoted in the Playbook, “Consider the mask to be your solution,” as the health and safety of team members and customers are the company’s number one priority, she writes in the introduction.
Laudato updates the Playbook regularly as state and CDC guidelines change and outbreaks ebb and flow, and no employees have yet contracted the virus. Besides contributing to a safe work environment, the guide also served to calm delivery and installation crews that were “very, very scared about going into people’s homes,” and has helped promote team morale and company loyalty. Equally important, as she notes in the Playbook, “Our hope in sharing this information is that it may be of assistance to others.”
Laudato’s final piece of advice as we work our way through the health crisis: “Have compassion, be flexible and roll with the punches.”
Don’s Appliances’ Safe Work Playbook is available for download here.
BrandSource, a unit of YSN publisher AVB Inc., is a nationwide buying group for independent appliance, mattress, furniture and CE dealers.