Make Your Safety Job Redundant

The safety of others is more important than clinging to your job.

Who is benefitting most from you showing up at work each day? Your co-workers or you? The answer to this question illustrates your intent.

When a safety person finally builds that culture where everyone buys-in and everyone looks out for each other, the point of “needing” a safety person becomes redundant. The exceptional safety person has a personal mission of putting themselves out of work. If you are truly committed to making your workplace the safest it can be, you are essentially working to put yourself out of work.

Now why would you do that?

Because the safety of others is more important than clinging to your job. The job you want to put yourself out of is policing the workplace for safety violations. Instead, you want to make it your mission to change how employees are trained. You want to be the leader in changing the mindset on safety. And you want to lead the change in the company’s culture to one that looks out for each other. If you can do that, no smart company is ever going to get rid of you. You’re the most valuable person in the company.


The safety person of the future is going to spend more time developing better training instead of policing work-sites.


New Call-to-actionStart making that change. Train the supervisors how to influence the in-the-moment decisions on the front-line.  Let the supervisors, who already have good relationships with their people, do the day-to-day policing of safety.

We are still going to need to meet the legislation. We’ll still need to create process and procedure to do work safely. The safety person of the future is going to spend more time developing better training instead of policing work-sites.

The better you help others get at their jobs may make your "current" position irrelevant but at the same time, it increases your value to the company. And, good companies keep the really good people.

So, again, who is benefiting most from you showing up each day? Them or you?

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Kevin Burns is a management consultant, safety speaker and author of "PeopleWork: The Human Touch in Workplace Safety." He is an expert in how to engage people in safety and believes that the best place to work is always the safest place to work. Kevin helps organizations align their people, leadership. communication and safety in order to improve performance and culture.

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