Tuesday, April 24, 2012

In a Strong Safety Culture, Safety is Everyone’s Job


Creating a safety culture takes time. In a strong safety culture, everyone feels responsible for safety and pursues it on a daily basis. Safety should part of everything we do. It is everyone’s job, every day. In fact, nothing is so urgent or important that we cannot do it safely.

Integrating safety into our daily lives reduces risk of injury and other losses. In offices, a safety focus helps us avoid ergonomic injuries or slips and falls. It also teaches us things like how to safely evacuate a building during an emergency. In manufacturing operations there are engineering controls, procedures and safeguards to ensure a safe working environment. Embedding safety into our culture also ensures that the products we make are safe for our customers.

Safety is part of continual improvement and requires participation by everyone. If you observe a situation or activity that is dangerous, it is your job to take direct action to ensure the safety of your colleagues. Attention to safety is the kind of behavior businesses need to help fuel success and, at the same time, safeguard their business.

A company with a strong safety culture typically experiences few at-risk behaviors, consequently they also experience low accident rates, low turn-over, low absenteeism, and high productivity. They are usually companies who are extremely successful by excelling in all aspects of business and excellence.

Adhering to the principles of safety helps protect a business’s most important assets—its people. Employer and employee commitment are hallmarks of a true safety culture where safety is an integral part of daily operations. Mutual commitment is the basis for mutual respect.

How do you approach safety? And who’s job is it?



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2 comments:

  1. Very timely! We're finding that even in a business environment, by consciously adding safety goals- we're having more conversations as a business unit re: evacuations, business continuity, emergency preparedness, and disaster recovery. It had to come from our VP down as a mandatory goal for everyone's PFPPs in our division, otherwise it would continue to not be taken seriously!

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    1. I am glad you liked. In any business safety has to be the highest priority. Followed of course by quality. They are complimentary. If you can do these two well then everything else gets easier. Be determined in your culture change. It is the only way people will adapt to this new habit.

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