Think about the last time your company expanded or the last time you had a big round of hiring. Think about the times you’ve spent in management meetings discussing new initiatives being rolled-out or a new direction being taken. None of that happens by accident. It is all part of a large vision and executing a plan.Read More
You don’t need more rules and procedures in safety. You need more people to buy-in to what you are trying to do in safety. That is a very different issue. And it requires a different set of skills to capture hearts and minds of employees in safety.
If you’ve adopted a leadership mindset, then you will have already spent time envisioning what needs fixing in your safety program. Without spending time to assess what’s wrong, you can’t possibly improve your program. Without a vision of where you would like to end up, you’ll stay stuck right where you are.Read More
Sending people home safe is the least you are allowed to do by law. You’re not allowed to do less than that. So, when you celebrate sending your people home safe, you are undermining your own safety program. You send the wrong message to your people. You are suggesting that you have to work hard to be safe. But, safety isn’t supposed to be hard. So when you celebrate sending people home safe, it feels to them like you had to work hard to accomplish that.
Your people show up to work expecting that you have taken every reasonable precaution to provide them a safe place to work. When you celebrate that you’re sending them home safe, you’re celebrating the basic minimum and it contradicts your people’s expectations.Read More
You look for the members of your team to deliver their best performance each day. Or at least something near to their best performance. Despite their best intentions to do that, your people can be pulled off-task by something or someone new in their workspace. Or a sudden change in the workflow. Interruption is the quickest way to mess with the flow of someone’s excellent performance.Read More
Can you seriously call it “employee engagement” if the employee has little to do with it? Safety engagement needs to connect better.Read More
Twenty years ago, most of the safety jobs that exist today, weren’t around. In another ten years, most of the safety jobs as you know them will have disappeared. New ideas make way for new approaches. And for anyone who thinks that safety will be the same in ten years from now is not paying attention. Everything cycles, including safety.Read More
We don’t need more safety rules. We need more buy-in to safety.
It feels like safety is in a transition place – where the compliance and punitive consequential measures of the past are giving way to more of a sense of community and teamwork. Where rules-based safety programs are giving way to higher levels of engagement, awareness and participation. Where safety managers are acting more in a consultative role instead of the clipboard carrying, looking-over-shoulder types of the past. But there is still resistance to safety by some employees (there is certainly no widespread and universal acceptance of safety) largely due to how safety has been positioned in the workplace.Read More
Safety is not a process problem. It's a marketing problem.
For fifty years, since the creation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, we have been trying to get our people to embrace safety through mechanical means and clumsy attempts to scare them into safety (gruesome stories, gut-wrenching videos, fear and scolding). We’ve tried punitive rules enforcement, checkbox processes and procedures, and endless streams of paperwork. We create mind-numbing, PowerPoint-laden safety meetings and still get exasperated that we can’t seem to create employee buy-in. Had any of the above been the answer, surely something would have been successful by now. But these are all mechanical means and mechanical means don't create employee buy-in.Read More
Driving along the highway, you look down at the speedometer and confirm that you are travelling at exactly the speed limit. Suddenly, you see a police car at the side of the highway with a radar gun pointed in your direction. Despite that you just confirmed that you were travelling the speed limit, you ease up on the accelerator anyway.Read More