Safety Culture – You Know It When You See It.

One of the most famous quotes to come out of the Supreme Court came when a Justice, asked whether something was or was not obscene, said, “I will know it when I see it.”  

A lot of things are hard to define, including “Safety Culture.”   It is very hard to say what constitutes a “Great Safety Culture,”  but it is clear that actions speak louder than slogans.   When I read this list of best practices by leading companies, by Howard Mavity, Fisher and Phillips law firm, all I could say was, “Wow! He nailed it.”

Here are my five favorites from his list:

  1. Project manager and superintendent bonuses depend on safety performance.
  2. Company and subcontractor incidents are investigated, and then the project team makes a presentation of the findings to management.
  3. “Stop work” award letters from the CEO are given to employees who take action to stop and correct an unsafe activity.
  4. After the first 250 hours of work, new employees are brought back through the process to see how they feel about safety and what the company should do differently in terms of bringing on new employees.
  5. Visit employees at home if they have been injured on the job.

The article lists 40 “best practices.”   A few may not be practical for your company, but all are worth considering.

What do you consider to be markers of a great safety culture?

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