Kevin Burns, Calgary-based safety speaker

PeopleWork BlogTips and strategies to help you align the people you employ, to build more leaders, to communicate more effectively all while looking out for each other and keeping each other safe.

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3 Key Safety Responsibilities for Employees

Posted by Kevin Burns

Oct 18, 2017 9:30:00 AM

Every employee has responsibilities in safety. The biggest of which is to ensure that you protect yourself.

There is a lot of talk of safety leadership, complacency, accountability and responsibility on the job these days. At the same time, there is less discussion about compliance measures, rules, regulation, etc. And although there is still much work to be done in safety, we’re starting to change the conversation. Workplaces that are becoming more people-focused is good news.

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Topics: safety leadership, kevin burns, safety culture, safety accountability, positive safety,, safety commitment, safety engagement, peoplework, accelerate safety, safety responsibility

How Safety Leaders Define Accountability and Responsibility

Posted by Kevin Burns

Oct 4, 2017 9:30:00 AM

Safety is a shared responsibility with each individual being accountable for their actions.

On a recent LinkedIn post about accountability, I was asked the following:

Hi Kevin, I'm constantly engaged in discussions around accountability and responsibility with all levels of hierarchy within the business as almost no one understands the difference. What's your experience?

Awesome question. I too, used to think they were two interchangeable words. In fact, the dictionaries interchange them at least once on each word. So, it's not surprising that your clients and colleagues struggle with it. But to me, they are not interchangeable at all. In fact, each word has very specific differentiators.

This post will help you to arm your colleagues, employees and clients with a new and unique way to understand accountability and responsibility, to use them more effectively, and to be able to align themselves with each word personally and within the scope of the safety program.

Be forewarned, these definitions may not be the classic dictionary version of the words. 

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Topics: safety speaker, safety leadership, kevin burns, safety management, safety consulting, safety accountability, peoplework, safety responsibility

3 Conversations to Influence Safety Buy-in

Posted by Kevin Burns

Jul 26, 2017 9:30:00 AM

The one thing that will connect continuous-cash-flow, long-term investments and legacy, is safety. Without safety, everything is at risk.

The safety department complains that it’s difficult to get workers to buy-in to safety. Employees resist buying-in to a program of checks, forms and paperwork. Especially the paperwork.

Safety meetings, rewards, recognition and paperwork are important. Indeed. Each plays a role in the safety culture-building plan. But to build a successful safety program requires a foundation of employee buy-in. Without it, you will be feeding the monster (spending large amounts of money) and never achieve the desired success.

To change that, go to Leadership 101; basic values-based conversations with employees. Coach employees to see that their own long-term goals and the company’s long-term goals are the same. The values are the same. Then, show them how safety is the tool that gets them from where they are (in the present) to where they want to be (in the future). Safety is the insurance to protect the future. 

Here are three compelling conversations for supervisors and safety people to have with their crews one-on-one. The purpose of these conversations is to influence better buy-in to safety:

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Topics: safety speaker, safety leadership, kevin burns, safety culture, safety buy-in, selling safety, safety accountability, safety values, peoplework

Safety's The Safety Guy's Responsibility

Posted by Kevin Burns

Feb 1, 2017 6:08:35 PM

Safety is a shared responsibility. It’s not exclusive to one person.

It still exists. There are far too many people who still believe that safety is the responsibility of the safety department. They think Safety is responsible for completing forms and paperwork, interventions and observations, and making sure employees are wearing their PPE.

The safety department will also supply them with their eye protection, hearing protection, gloves and will pony up cash for other parts of the required and mandated safety equipment. But, just like a rental car, they treat the company-purchased safety protection in the same way. Misplaced regularly, they expect the company to replace their lost PPE items.

Even though they may use their own power tools on a construction site, for example, the hands that hold the tools should be covered by gloves purchased by the company. The safety guy must do all of the paperwork because, “that’s his job.”

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Topics: safety leadership, kevin burns, safety culture, safety accountability, peoplework

Top 3 Arguments For Safety

Posted by Kevin Burns

Oct 21, 2014 9:54:00 PM

Here are three compelling arguments for choosing safety. Call it the “Diesel Strategy” because it is powerful and goes a long distance.

The safety department complains that it’s difficult to get workers to buy-in to safety. Employees resist buying-in to a program of checks, forms and paperwork.

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Topics: safety leadership, safety buy-in, selling safety, safety accountability, safety values

3 Critical Ways To Positively Communicate Safety

Posted by Kevin Burns

Sep 17, 2014 10:00:00 PM

Do you want your people fearing for their safety? Or would you rather have them feeling confident and supported in their safe choices?

The notice read: “An inspirational keynote speech preferably from someone who's had an accident. A leave-behind message to always be mindful and follow procedures. A flat fee of $(cheap). No phone calls please.

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Topics: safety speaker, safety attitude, safety culture, safety management, safety marketing, safety compliance, safety accountability

How To Increase Accountability In Safety

Posted by Kevin Burns

Jul 21, 2014 10:07:00 PM

It is impossible to create accountability in safety without getting every employee to make it a part of their job.

Safety managers and front-line supervisors want employees to be more active and vocal about safety. They want employees to be more engaged in the decisions that the employees make and the results they get. They want more active participation in reporting, in actively talking about safety and a much higher involvement in being vocal at safety meetings.

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Topics: safety leadership, safety culture, safety manager, safety compliance, safety apathy, safety accountability

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