How are you getting personal with health and safety?

5th March 2020

We’ve all heard it, haven’t we? Yep, the message that we’re all responsible for Health and Safety. It’s a message that’s universally stated in many workplaces which makes it pretty reasonable to ask, ‘how did you show up today and contribute to everyone getting home safe and well in your workplace’?

It’s a great question because it applies to all of us. No-one can justifiably turn around and say ‘nope – this has nothing to do with me’. But have you ever taken the time to stop and ask yourself ‘what did I contribute today’ – and then think ‘wow, that’s pretty amazing’ or ,’I think I could also do…’

So, here are five questions which can help you become a really strong contributor in this area:

The Basic One

Is it clear what I need to contribute?

This may be as simple as asking yourself – do I have a clear job description? Was I inducted well? Does my boss regularly engage me on health and safety? If one of your kids or a friend asked you ‘what did you do today to help a colleague’ how would you respond?

The Visual One

Do I have a mental picture of what a good day for health and safety looks like? 

If you were asked to describe your perfect day at work, what would you see in your mind? Try and go beyond the ‘well, no one would get hurt’ – but think more around what a perfect day would look like, rather than what a perfect day would avoid. Having the mindset that says ‘if I can see it, I can work to create it’ – is a great one to have.

The Grateful One

Have I said thank you today for a job well done? 

When do I say thank you to my team? My boss? Or, a colleague – for a good contribution to health and safety? Maybe they cleared up a mess someone else left behind or maybe they coached you or a colleague on how to use your new incident reporting tool? If you want more of something, recognise and reward when it has been achieved.   

The Frog One

Have you swallowed the frog that you know needs to get sorted?

Don’t panic – eating amphibians isn’t necessary! This question relates to the idea of dealing with the worst thing on your to-do list at the start of your day. It’s the very first thing you do. That’s because when you’ve dealt with it, only better things await you – see Brian Tracy, Eat that Frog, it’s a brilliant book. What big issue did you deal with today? Getting into a good habit of doing this will show your colleagues that change is possible – and achievable.

The Curious One

What if I tried this?

Have you ever given yourself the opportunity to stop, be present, pay attention to the work around you and say, ‘I wonder if there’s a better way of doing this?’ What if we all could implement a few small changes a week – I wonder what our workplaces would look like then. To be clear, sometimes we need very consistent risk controls. But that doesn’t mean we need to switch off our brains to see whether we could do a task better.

Leaders must lead, managers must manage, and all employees must engage and involve themselves to get us home safe and well each and every day. Perhaps now’s the time to take a moment to think about your own personal contribution.

To find out more about our Broadly Thinking approach and how we can work with you to deliver transformational change across your organisation, please get in touch with the Broadhead Global team.

Written by Darren Broadhead – Health & Safety Leadership Specialist

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