3 Steps to Creating a Culture of Safety May 12 2015

There is a lot of emphasis placed on company culture, corporate culture, safety culture, lean culture... But what does this all mean, and why is it such a big deal?

Culture, in a nutshell, is the working environment. This can apply to the more broad core values of your organization, which will ultimately trickle down to the inner workings of the company; it can also be applied to the work relationships and processes each individual experiences in their workspace.

On the most basic level, culture is comprised of values, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors shared by a group of people. Cultivating an empowered, positive company culture is absolutely crucial for a strong, healthy business.

In any workplace, a culture devoted to safety will drastically limit the amount of accidents and safety violations, and it will also instill confidence in your employees. Knowing that their employer and overall organization truly cares for their safety will give your employees the sense of security needed to work safely in their environment.

How can you develop a culture devoted to safety, thus ensuring a sense of confidence in your employees?

1. Appoint a strong leadership team. Creating a capable, empowered team of leaders will give your lower level employees the confidence of knowing they are not alone in their efforts of contributing to a safe working environment.

Strong management is your gateway from the CEOs to the day-to-day workers carrying your organization. Having accessible, knowledgeable leaders lets you focus on big picture moves for your company because you have the assurance of proper delegation.

Make the right tools for safety available to your team. Utilizing safety tools in your workspace and conducting thorough safety training for employees is a great way to create a conscious safety culture. Ensure that everyone on your team knows the safety procedures for their workspace, whether it is a dangerous warehouse environment or a more tame office environment.

You can do this and keep your company aligned with lean practices by implementing a visual workspace and making corresponding instructional signage for any visitors not acquainted with your workplace standards.

3. Listen for feedback from your employees. Let your employees be the first to speak out in staff meetings, so they will feel more free to contribute original ideas rather than merely echoing managerial suggestions. Directly ask open ended questions that will stimulate discussion among your upper and lower level employees.

Your organization runs on the backs of the day-to-day employees. They will know better than anyone else what is working and what isn't working in your workplace. The empowerment of allowing your employees to truly have a voice in their position will be the return on your enforcement of safety culture. Empowered employees are generally happier employees, which will in turn bring you better results in overall production quality.

Other posts you may find interesting:

4 Essential Tips to Create an Empowered Workplace
How Lean Thinking Will Transform Your Workplace into a Safer, More Satisfying Environment
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