I hope your week has been productive and successful so far? One way to have a fruitful week as an employer or someone in the management group is to go all week without a report of an accident in your organization. Undoubtedly, lack of safety in the workplace can bring about devastating experiences but of course, this can be prevented.
A safety culture is an organization-wide approach to safety management and enforcement. It involves individual and group efforts to achieve the goals of a successful safety culture as well as time. Everyone in an organization plays an important role in developing a positive safety program.
I remember when I had to work in a company for a period of time. Something I would never forget about the company was its safety culture. It was so important to the company and its employees even to the extent that pathways were drawn/ created around the parking lot to prevent accidents and it was mandatory to walk through the created paths.
In fact, holding the rails while making use of any stairway was totally compulsory and this was really fascinating to me at the time. One thing I noticed during my time at the company was how accident rates had dropped drastically according to facts and statistics and it was entirely good for the company’s reputation. It also showed that the company valued the well-being of its employees.
You need to understand that promoting or encouraging a safety culture for your organization will help save a lot of disability-related costs especially in regards to compensation claims and it also prevents irrelevant legal actions. Safety should be treated as crucial. You don’t have to run a factory before you treat safety as important. Also, promoting a workplace safety culture would also reduce lost time injuries and illnesses which can be averted.
Educating your employees on the use of basic electronic devices, importance of ergonomic, and situational awareness goes a long way in showing how much you value their health and safety in the workplace and ultimately personal lives. If you build a successful safety culture in your organization, it will ultimately affect the lives of your employees positively because they will unconsciously practice safety in their daily routines.
Here are ways to go about creating and promoting a positive safety culture for your organization;
1. Explain the importance of safety
The first step is to discuss what your proposed safety policy will contain. Then go about preparing one and distributing it subsequently. There should be goals that the safety policy intends to meet and it should involve a plan to achieve such goals. Ideally, the goal should be for safety to take top priority at all times because an injured or ill employee amounts to reduced productivity, loss of profit and a loss to the organization generally.
The goals towards reaching a successful safety culture should be specific, measurable, attainable, and realistic. The journey towards safety culture is gradual and as such, it should be one that can be achieved in a possible way, in a way that would soothe employees taking into consideration, the industry.
2. Integrate safety into daily tasks
You can prepare safety guides in form of reminders and place them in conspicuous areas within the workplace. Make out time to regularly discuss the importance of safety so that it gradually becomes a habit. There should also be safety meetings held periodically. It could be weekly or bi-weekly. During these meetings there can be some form of safety presentation to remind employees of the importance of safety and the presentations can touch on various topics related to safety depending on your industry and work environment.
This will provide good knowledge for employees and broaden their minds to various aspects of safety in the workplace which they might never have considered previously. There should be a commitment to safety at all levels of your organization. It is not a one-way program. Equally, train your managers or supervisors to lead by example and actions.
Everyone should be accountable for their safety. Encourage employees to also look out for the safety of others. Blame shouldn’t be assigned where one fails to be safe, rather there should be some form of coaching or correction. However, if the employee fails to adhere to instructions then disciplinary measures may be taken. This should, however, be provided in the policy as earlier discussed. The discipline process should be fair and just.
Also, employees should be given the opportunity to report all safety issues they may be encountering at work and these should be taken into consideration and addressed as soon as possible.
4. Take records
Ensure that employees report injuries as this will help in analyzing the success of your safety program or not. Reports also help with statistics and give you ideas of what to look out for. Ensure to update this regularly.
5. Conduct investigation
Where there is an accident, ensure to carry out an informative and effective investigation to discover the cause and prevent it from repeating. This also helps prevent unnecessary expenses for your organization.
6. Celebrate success
You need to celebrate success with employees where you discover an improvement in safety within your organization. This will improve motivation and the desire to keep up with the safety culture. It will help build trust and create a positive workplace for all employees.
Safety should be viewed as an investment because it helps reduce unnecessary expenses that may be incurred in the event of an accident or absence of an employee due to illness. I encourage you to improve your safety culture if you have one and if you don’t, you would definitely see the benefits as soon as you work towards promoting one.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions please feel free to provide those in the comment section or contact me via the Contact page. You may also choose to send an email to [email protected].
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Thanks for reading and have a great week ahead!
Photo credit: Caio