We have attended thousands of safety meetings where the body language of the people coming in clearly indicates they don’t want to be there and that they have more important things to be doing.
Experience has told them that safety meetings are more TELL than share and more LISTEN than engage, more POWERPOINT than powerful, and sadly they are often right! Safety meetings should be an opportunity to inspire people, to show them how much we care for them AND to leave them thinking about being safe and helping those around them to be safe too.
When we think about it, any safety culture can be boiled down to one simple word, CARE. We want colleagues who genuinely care for their own safety and the safety of each other. So every safety meeting should have that as its focus. A great question to ask is “How can we inspire people to take good care of themselves and each other?” And if you don’t have the answer, ask your people. They will give you some great ideas.
Leaders, spend time going out meeting your teams on their worksites. Chat with them, engage with them and you will hear of how safety can be improved. Don’t just drag people into compulsory safety meetings, engage with them and see safety improve.
Remember, behind every safety statistic or trend, a person, a family and a community has been hurt.