SAFETY PERSPECTIVES

Reasons for Trying a Personal Approach to Safety Leadership

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

About a year ago we started working with a manufacturing company – one of their sites had been struggling with high incident rates for the previous couple of years. Their TRIR was significantly higher than the industry norm and they were having a significant issue with slips, trips and falls. When we began working with their leadership team, we realized that they had a great set of dedicated, seasoned supervisors, who had a strong work ethic and wanted to do the right thing. However, there was one problem – they didn’t necessarily have the strongest people skills. While this was apparent immediately upon meeting them, it was later confirmed when they completed a safety leadership assessment which measured their leadership style.


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Reduce Workers' Compensation Claims With Effective Employee Screening

Posted by  Amie Lawrence, Ph.D.

Maintaining a safe workplace is a crucial goal of most organizations, especially in industries where hazards are commonplace. In the manufacturing industry, keeping worker’s safe is a never-ending job and a considerable amount of effort is expended to minimize unsafe situations. When injuries and safety incidents do occur, the costs are considerable for both the worker and the employer. It’s in everyone’s best interest for workers to stay safe and healthy!


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3 Reasons Why Contractors Often Fail at Safety

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

A few years ago I was touring a coal mine in Australia as part of a project to help improve employee safety. We were just about to wrap up our tour when a small truck sped past us on the dirt road, leaving us in a large, billowing cloud of dust. I couldn’t help but comment to the Mine Superintendent, who was our tour guide, “Wow – seemed like he was going pretty fast, huh?” He immediately responded, “Yeah, that’s that (expletive) contractor again. The speed limit is 40 km per hour on this road! We’ve already talked to them twice about that.”


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What Is the Johari Window and How Can It Help Improve Your Personal Safety?

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

When a friend or a co-worker tells you that you act a certain way, how often do you agree with them? How well do you know your behavior relative to how other people see you? If you are like most people, there are lots of things people can say about you that you admit are true.

But let’s face it - some of us have better self-awareness than others. I bet that right now, you can easily think of someone you know who has no clue that they act a certain way (e.g., forgetful, picky, loud) even though everybody else around them seems to know it. We often refer to these as “blind spots”. These are the things about ourselves that others can see, but we do not.


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Do Machines Create a Greater Safety Risk for Employees?

Posted by  Craig White

We've all seen at least one of the many movies out there in which humans develop robots that eventually try to take over the world and kill us all. While most of us joke about it, some conspiracy theorists go so far as to call it an inevitability as we continue to design increasingly more complex and intelligent machines. As the use of robotics becomes more and more prevalent we will hear about the occasional incident that causes quite the unnecessary uproar among the public, but should we actually fear these machines?

The use of robotics in work sites such as manufacturing plants is changing the face of modern industry. As companies upgrade their operations with state-of-the-art technologies, workers are often replaced by automated machines that can more accurately and efficiently perform tasks, leaving them either unemployed or forced to find a new fit for themselves in the organization. One major shift for these individuals is the move from actually performing manufacturing tasks to installing, operating, and maintaining the robots that perform said tasks. This leads me to a tragic story coming out of Germany this past week.


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Q&A: Getting to the Real Root Cause of Risks at a Global Company

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

On June 24th, 2015, we held a safety webinar: What Were You Thinking? Getting to the Real Root Cause of Risks at a Global Company. By the end of the webinar, we had plenty of great questions and comments. Unfortunately, we ran out of time before being able to answer all of those questions. But there is some good news, we took note of all of the questions we didn’t get to, and decided to answer them after the fact. The questions and answers are below. Even if you didn’t attend the webinar, you will find some interesting data relating to safety in the answers below.


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What Do Hourly Employees Think the Biggest Safety Need Is?

Posted by  Guest Blogger

As a Safety Professional conducting training for over 3,000 people each year I get a rare opportunity to gain insight as to what hourly workers believe to be most neglected in the fight for a safer workplace. Here are four key aspects:


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Five Hazards to be Aware of to Increase Your Workplace Safety

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Have you ever spent time with someone who was so absentminded or distracted that you wondered how they got through life every day? On the other hand, have you ever known someone who was so observant and attentive that they made you feel a little self-conscious? I have been on both sides of this equation, and you probably have as well. Why? Because we all possess different levels of awareness. Individuals all vary somewhat when it comes to this ability. As we have described in previous blogs, Awareness of Surroundings is one of the four factors in the Select International Four Factor Model of SafetyDNA. This broad Awareness factor includes various components, such as attention to detail, working memory, multi-tasking, and distractibility. Research shows that all of these abilities are related to safety outcomes such as unsafe behavior and injury involvement. As you would expect, people who have higher levels of these traits tend to notice potential hazards around them more easily and quickly than those with lower levels, allowing them greater opportunity to avoid injury. While awareness is just one of many individual, situational, and organizational factors that lead to injuries, it is a critical one.


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How Safe is Your Organization When No One is Looking?

Posted by  Craig White

All too often, safety incidents occur as a consequence of poor SafetyDNA exhibited at the individual - or organizational-level. When employees become careless in their job tasks, increasingly unaware of pending and present dangers, or begin to disregard safety procedures and rules, they expose themselves and their coworkers to hazards. Even worse, if an entire plant or job-site is prioritizing productivity or deadlines above employee safety, the risk for accidents and injuries greatly intensifies. While we are quick to blame those directly involved in these events, we often fail to consider breakdowns in the greater system that may set the tone for organizations low on SafetyDNA to disregard internal measures of regulation.


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How Dangerous is a Weak Safety Culture?

Posted by  Craig White

When I arrived at Texas A&M University in 2011, I quickly realized that Aggie football is a big deal. Then Johnny Manziel came to town and Aggie football became a very big deal. Johnny Football’s two short years here sparked record-setting alumni donations that led to the approval of a $450 Million renovation to our football stadium, Kyle Field, which will boast a seating capacity of 102,512 upon completion.


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