Holiday, seasonal or regular overtime allows your company to handle increased sales demands or cover employee absences. While you may enjoy the extra money, long work hours affect workplace safety. Know five common overtime dangers and their solutions as you remain safe at work
Working 10 hours or more a day can increase your non-fatal heart attack risk by 60 percent. Long work hours may also increase workplace injuries and cause health problems such as:
- High blood pressure
- Increased alcohol and tobacco consumption
- Mental health problems
Address potential health risks when you take care of your physical health. Eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly, get enough sleep and perform regular self-care.
A Cornell University study found that three in 10 employees who work more than 60 hours a week experience severe family conflicts, including divorce. Personal problems at home can affect your concentration, attendance and productivity on the job.
Relieve personal problems when you leave your work at work and focus on your loved ones when you’re at home. Your employer may also offer professional counseling that addresses any ongoing challenges caused by overtime.
Workplace Safety Risks
Numerous studies link overtime with an increase in workplace accidents that could be caused by fatigue, performance impairment, low morale and decreased attention span. These safety risks can occur after a single or several long work days.
Carefully follow safety procedures, and encourage your co-workers to do the same. If you feel fatigued, stressed or distracted, talk to your employer since safety always comes first.
Poor morale affects 31 percent of employees who work more than 10 hours of overtime a week. When you don’t want to be at work, your attention wanes and you may make unsafe or costly mistakes.
Prioritize self-care as you improve your morale. Try to avoid negative conversations about work, too. A healthy work-life balance also helps you stay motivated to appreciate your job and do your best.
High Turnover Rates
Companies with high overtime rates also experience high turnover rates as employees decide that long work long hours are not worth the monetary rewards. Companies then must hire and train new employees who require time to learn workplace safety protocols.
While you can’t control the turnover rate, you can advocate for safety at all times. Encourage veteran and novice employees to follow all safety protocols, too.
Overtime may be mandatory at your workplace, so be aware of the dangers and the solutions that help you ensure safety. Ask your employer about the company’s wellness and mental health programs, too, that help you and your co-workers achieve balance and maintain safety as you work long hours.