It was a beautiful Saturday spring day and Stanley decided to do some tree trimming around the house. This was the first weekend he had off for several months and it felt good to be working in the yard. Not only that, he didn’t have his supervisor breathing down his neck with all that safety stuff. As he climbed the step ladder to reach a branch, he momentarily wondered if the ladder was sturdy enough or if he should reposition it. That was his last thought before the step ladder tipped over causing him to fall to the ground, breaking his leg and causing a deep laceration to his side with the cutting shears.
When we think about workplace health and safety, we think about health and safety legislation, health and safety regulations and health and safety laws. But workplace health and safety is much more than that. Safety is no accident. Safety is a choice we need to make every day of our lives. Whether it’s at work, at home or during recreation.
National Safety Month focuses on reducing leading causes of injury and death at work, on the roads and in our homes and communities. Workplace health and safety impact much more than just at work or following rules and regulations. It MUST encompass every aspect of our lives including the home.
It has been my experience that if an employee is not safe at home, they will not be safe at work. Let me share an example: If it is not a habit for an employee to regularly use their seat belt in their personal vehicle, it becomes difficult for that employee to regularly wear their seat belt in the company vehicle.
On the other side of the coin, if an employee is not safe at work, they will not be safe at home. Why should this be your concern you may ask? If an employee suffers an injury at home in a non-work related activity, there is no work comp issue. But now you have a productive employee that is no longer able to work, either temporarily or permanently. This can put a strain on your business and your profitability.
Train and educate your employees to be safe. At work, at home and at play. Use the National Safety Month of June as a kick-start to a new way of life.
And remember…Recognize your employees when they are doing it right. Because a thumbs up is encouragement to the soul!