In last week’s post, we highlighted just a few of the benefits of behavior-based safety, and we covered five key characteristics that enable organizations to get the most out of a behavior-based safety program.
This post will be the first in a 5-part series that takes a deeper look into each of these characteristics. Here we’re going to discuss the important role that leadership plays in promoting and reinforcing your BBS programs to frontline employees.
Why Is the Leader’s Role Important?
Your supervisors and managers need to be the champions of your behavior-based safety program because they’re the ones with direct contact with employees. Fostering a positive work environment between leaders and workers is essential to the success of your programs. By having open dialogue and working relationships among the two groups, you’ll create an environment where behavior-based safety can thrive.
Your leaders also play an important role in ensuring that the behavior-based safety procedures are being carried out, which is why it’s important to strong and reliable people in those roles. Leadership maintains contact with workers and are essential in pinpointing not only unsafe behavior, but also the reasons that may be causing the unsafe behavior.
4 Steps to Employee Engagement With Safety
Managers and supervisors can have a big impact on how employees view safety in general and the behavior-based safety program specifically. Here are four steps they can take to make the program successful.
Knowing how to communicate corrective aspects of behavior-based safety to employees is essential. There’s a fine line between keeping a positive work environment and taking problems seriously, and good managers and supervisors know what that line is. Employees should also be given the chance to give feedback about their experiences with the behavior-based safety program.
Setting safety goals is a great way to motivate and get employees thinking about safety and engaging in safe behavior on the job. Think of the classic, “Accident-free for ___ days!” sign posted at job sites. When setting goals, be sure to utilize historical data to create realistic baselines for achievement.
Your organization may choose to incentivize employees monetarily for reaching specific goals throughout the year and/or by simply recognizing a job well done, but be sure to give your employees a strong reason and motivation to adopt behavior-based safety.
Be Role Models
Safety leaders need to lead by example. Employees will look up to strong leaders to determine how they should behave at work and how to properly engage in safe behavior. If managers and supervisors let things slide in their own practices, employees won’t take them seriously.
Join Us Next Week
In next week’s post, we’ll take a look at organizations that have succeeded with behavior-based safety because they have already established the basic safety practices, and we’ll offer some tips on what you need to have in place in order to facilitate behavior-based safety.
If your organization is looking for more information or help implementing your behavior-based safety program, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 864.905.7835. We’ll see you next week!