It’s that time of year again! The month of June is National Safety Month; and the National Safety Council encourages you to get involved. National Safety Month is an annual observance to educate and influence behaviors focusing on the leading indicators that prevent injuries and deaths.
his year the emphasis on safety is not only focused on the workplace, but also at home as well. If you feel as though your workplace is moving in the right direction with safety, then it is time to take a look at the other 50% of your employees time spent outside of those company doors. Needless to say that the largest percentage of injuries outside of the workplace happen ON THE WAY TO WORK; between rush hour traffic, an employee that has just pulled a double shift falling asleep behind the wheel or speeding home to try and beat traffic, the hazards are endless.
Is there a difference between the level of production by an employee, if they are at home nursing injuries that happened at work or during their time off? The answer is No. Why should we spend all of our efforts and resources to preach safe behavior on the worksite, but leave it up to fate when they walk out of those company doors…
It is highly unlikely to create a successful safety culture by accident. Staying safe requires the full focus and attention of your employees every second of every day. By putting emphasis on the importance of safety both on and off work promotes a true safety culture. Let’s eliminate the concept of “Turning on/Off the Light Switch” when your employees enter and exit the building. Let’s find ways to keep the light switch constantly ON, to raise awareness that safety not only exists inside your building but in their daily lives as well.
Finding ways to encourage your employees to remain safe every second of every day can seem unattainable. I assure you that it IS possible and there are great ways to encourage constant engagement both on and off the worksite. The use of the word “Incentives” automatically causes a knee jerk reaction with some to say “No, OSHA does not approve of Incentives.” But first let me clarify, OSHA does not frown upon all Incentive Programs; only those Traditional programs that promote underreporting or non-reporting(focusing on the lagging indicators). However, OSHA’s standpoint on Non-Traditional Incentive programs that focus on changing the behaviors and those Leading Indicators is compliant. Ensuring that you are utilizing an incentive program to be a tool in your toolbox to promote safe behavior and not as a Safety SOP substitute; then it can be successful.