Use a proactive approach to workplace safety.
We’ve all heard the proverb: “It takes a village to raise a child.” Along a similar line, it takes a safety culture to create a safe workplace. Every employee plays an important role in the safety of all employees — not just themselves.
Creating a safety culture at your workplace requires a proactive safety attitude and a team approach. Consider these tips to help get everyone onboard:
- Talk safety. The more you talk up the importance of safety, the more you’ll generate awareness and attention of employees across all levels. Regular discussion helps promote a safety culture that encourages inclusion and information sharing. It’s widely recognized that the safest workplaces are where workers hear people talking regularly about safety.
- Encourage safety suggestions. Nobody knows a job better than the worker who performs it. That’s why it’s critically important to encourage workers to share their ideas for making their jobs safer. You’ll help improve safety conditions and performance, while involving workers in the improvement process — another plus.
- Act promptly to correct hazards. Whenever a hazard or safety issue is identified, act promptly to correct the situation. If you don’t fix safety problems — even minor ones — right away, employees will think you don’t care. And if you don’t care — why should they?
- Provide ongoing safety and health training. Make sure employees have the skills, knowledge and understanding they need to work safely and avoid accidents. Well-trained employees develop good safety attitudes and are more apt to make safety a priority.
- Reward safe performance. If you’re not already doing so, make safety performance a part of employee performance appraisals. Employees who understand that pay increases, promotions and other rewards are contingent on having a proactive safety attitude tend to take workplace safety more seriously. Be sure to communicate your expectations often with your employees.
- Set positive examples. Make sure your managers and supervisors set a positive example and consistently demonstrate safe behaviors.