Hiring an employee who smokes can cost you $5,000 or more over the course of a single year. Even if you ask an applicant if he or she smokes during a job interview, the person may not respond in a truthful manner. You also have to worry about those already working for you who smoke. Smokers have the right to take breaks to smoke outside, and you’ll find that you pay more for the health insurance of those smokers. There are a few ways that you can encourage your employees to stop smoking and help them reach that goal.
One of the best ways to keep workers from smoking is with an outright ban. Employees already know that they cannot smoke at their desks or in the break room, but they can head outside for a cigarette break. Make the decision to ban smoking on company property. This means that you need to put up signs that smoking is no longer allowed and that you need to remove any ashtrays placed outside. Let them know that if they need to take a break, they need to leave company property to have that cigarette.
Set a Smoking Tax
If you rent office space, or share space with other businesses, you may not have the right to hang signs and ban smoking. Instead of trying to make your employees quit, let them know that they’ll face some penalties for smoking. Charging a small tax for every employee who wants to take a cigarette break can make some stop and think twice before they head outside. You can even increase the size of the tax for every break workers take beyond their first cigarette break of the day.
Hold a Cessation Class
Those who stop smoking and stay off cigarettes are usually those who attend a smoking cessation class. These courses talk to smokers about the dangers of tobacco and nicotine, including lung cancer and circulation issues. They also learn about some of the methods that worked best for others. Some people find that using an e-cigarette helps, while others prefer using a nicotine patch or nicotine gum. Smoking cessation groups also act as a support group to help employees understand that they are not alone. You can bring in an expert and hold a session during the week or offer a support group at night after work.
Those with experience in the business and health world like Yosef Meystel know how much incentives can help employees change or adjust their bad behaviors. You can offer a range of different bonuses for workers based on how quickly they reduce the number of cigarettes they smoke or how long they go without a cigarette. Good incentives might include promotional items from your company, the chance to leave work early or an extra vacation day. Those bonuses, combined with other methods, might help your workers stop smoking faster.
When your employees frequently take cigarette breaks and come to client meetings smelling strongly of smoke, you have a problem on your hands. As an employer, there are a number of different methods you can use to help them stop smoking, including offering smoking cessation classes at work, awarding them bonuses, banning smoking and charging taxes on cigarette breaks.
Article Submitted By Community Writer.