Alot of clients tell me that having a culture of safety sounds good, but they don’t know where to start. This action plan summarizes steps to get moving in the right direction. With a strong safety culture, any company can move closer to achieving zero accidents.
A good safety culture requires commitment, and leaders have to decide to commit to safety as part of what they do. When leaders and management take intelligent precautions with an appropriate safety budget, they signal to their employees that they are committed to keeping them safe. When safety is repeatedly engrained in processes, steps become quicker and easier over time.
Training is essential to a robust safety culture. Just as we would not send a soldier in to battle without training, we should not send workers out in to the field without equipping them first. We must allow appropriate time for proper training. When we train, we are actually molding that person’s future behavior.
Intelligent leaders will recognize safety budgets as an investment. When we invest in people, we create assets that are able to work safely and efficiently. Investment into your employees’ safety not only turns personnel in to valuable assets, but reduces risk and liability as well.
After an incident or near miss, response from leadership should be sincere, timely, and appropriate. A good response should show a detailed understanding of situation and empathy for the employees. Most importantly, a responder should recognize the hazard and how it will be controlled.
Detailed inspections are an important part of the process. Thorough inspections will reveal deficiencies and position leaders to correct them. Inspections should be performed as though your own family was about to operate the equipment.
Leaders should encourage a safety mindset honestly and regularly. Showing priority from leadership makes it a priority for lower level employees. When employees are encouraged, rather than policed, their motivation becomes a stronger part of their commitment.