Establishing a safety team within an organization is a solid step in the right direction toward continuous safety excellence. But many organizations make the mistake of pulling back and leaving the team to their own devices after kick-off. This is the quickest way a strong vision loses focus.
Tapping natural safety leaders to form a team is only the first step toward achieving safety success. A safety team requires resources, direction, and a supportive atmosphere to truly thrive. And these are largely areas where many organizations are lacking hands-on experience. Which is why bringing on a 3rd party of safety experts — such as Optimum Safety Management — provides necessary guidance. Help set safety teams up for success by resourcing experts fluent in safety to provide the outside direction and safety knowledge to achieve the safety team’s full potential.
Understand What It Means to Be a Safety Leader
A safety team needs safety leaders to function. These are the individuals who define safety goals and will set the standard that other employees measure themselves against. And safety leaders may come from unexpected places within an organization.
Employees who show an aptitude for safety may not have prior leadership experience. But this should not disqualify them from joining a safety team. It may just show that these employees have yet to be given the opportunity to lead. Providing an opportunity on a safety team is strong way for employers to utilize employee skills in a new way and grow their potential.
Formalized training is also necessary to develop strong safety leadership. Safety leaders who participate in education and workshops are able to cement the best practices of safety to pass along to their organizations. But it is important that safety leaders focus on both aspects of their role: safety and leadership. Participating in education and training that deals with leadership principals provides the skills that sharpen communication and empower safety leaders to directly implement safety directives with higher degrees of adoption and success.
Building a Safety Culture
The safety culture is what propels an entire organization toward long-term safety success. This is because culture determines how employees act when no one is directly looking over their shoulder. Think of it like this: employers want employees who stop at stop signs even when no other cars are around. Because those are the employees who are paying attention and have a greater understanding of safety beyond following instructions.
Safety leaders and teams are responsible for establishing and driving an organization’s safety culture. So they need to understand what makes a safety culture successful for a safety culture to be successful. Providing the team with education and workshops from safety experts helps safety teams learn applicable skills directly from the source. The safety team can then build the foundation of a safety culture the right way from the start and pass their knowledge to other employees holistically.
Committing to the development of safety leaders is investing in the longevity of a business. The best laid plans are undone without thorough follow-through. Leaving a safety team without training and support after forming the group is abandoning the plan before it’s able to get off the ground. Utilize the safety team to its fullest potential by investing in its leaders and providing the resources for the team to create a culture of safety. Because those are the investments that will yield the greatest return.
Optimum Safety Management provides the information and services to help companies develop safety leaders and improve overall safety performance. For more information on how Optimum Safety Management can assist with your businesses’ safety needs, contact an expert today, or reach out via phone at 630-759-9908.