Definition of Good Housekeeping
The term “Good Housekeeping” is used as a standard of quality in living and work conditions.
Turn of the Century
Five years after the launch of “Good Housekeeping” magazine, the Good Housekeeping Experiment Station (later named the Good Housekeeping Institute) was founded in 1900. By testing washing machines, iceboxes and other mass-marketed household appliances, the organization and its magazine became renowned for its “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval.”
Applied to the Workplace
Good housekeeping goes beyond the home. Governments such as Canada’s Centre for Occupational Health and Safety advocate good housekeeping rules in the workplace. Such rules go beyond cleanliness.
Heeding the law of entropy (which states that nature tends from order to disorder in isolated systems), good housekeeping requires ongoing maintenance throughout the workday, rather than sporadic cleaning.
By removing objects, debris and clutter that people could trip over or quickly cleaning up slippery surfaces, the practice of good housekeeping can help prevent accidents. Removing paper, cardboard and other combustible waste can prevent fire hazards.
The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety states that workers should be trained to work safely with the tools and products they use and how to protect other workers.