There’s no denying that workplace safety starts at the top. It’s up to an organization’s owners and managers to establish an acceptable safety protocol that is clear, easy to understand and specific to the risks and hazards associated with your business. Furthermore, depending on what that business is, you may be subject to certain safety laws, rules and regulations that dictate your company’s approach to safety. Regardless of your own situation, it’s of paramount importance that your company’s leadership officials provide a solid foundation of safety in the workplace.
Developing a Plan
If necessary, you may want to consider hiring a professional safety consultant for this step of the process. A third-party consultant can form an exterior, unbiased opinion about your current safety program, its effectiveness and how it can be improved upon in the future. A third-party safety consultant may even be able to highlight local rules or regulations regarding safety in your area.
Whether you consult with an outside consultant is totally up to you, but all of your company’s managerial and executive staff members should certainly be involved in the process. Even if they don’t have any specific input as individuals, your managers will ultimately be the ones who enforce the safety plan on a day-to-day basis.
Enforce the Plan
As mentioned, a company’s management team will be the ones on the frontline. They are responsible for communicating any established safety procedures as well as enforcing such procedures on a consistent basis. Because of this, it’s important to make sure that all of your managers have an intimate familiarity with the current safety plan.
Once a comprehensive safety program has been established, it’s important to make sure that all of your staff members are clear on any expectations, guidelines or requirements. Although this can be achieved by holding group-oriented safety meetings, individual staff members can also be taken aside for one-on-one safety education as needed. If necessary, don’t hesitate to implement a series of regularly scheduled safety meetings. Such initiatives can really drive home the importance of your company’s plans regarding workplace safety.
Verbally communicating the safety plan to your employees is only one part of the equation. Posters, pamphlets and even employee training manuals can all be updated to reflect any new safety standards. More importantly, make sure such materials are located in a place that is highly visible and accessible to all of your employees, including new hires. Finally, make sure to distribute any safety handbooks or pamphlets to each and every new hire.
Some organizations even provide incentives as a means of promoting and enforcing workplace safety throughout their company. Incentives can come in a variety of forms, and some managers have been known for coming up with highly creative ways of rewarding their safety and most productive staff members. Additional vacation time, extended lunch breaks, gift cards to local stores or restaurants and even increased monetary compensation can all be used as rewards for a safe workforce.