Why some businesses/companies are slow to comply
All Health & Safety legislation sets out clearly the roles and responsibilities of employers, employees, directors and officers of companies. It’s not an optional extra. Bottom line is if you are an employer then you must put in place a safety statement with the appropriate risk assessments for your company this is your program in writing as to your commitment to the safety of your employees and others who may be effected by your operation. It’s a legal requirement.
So ask yourself these four questions. Do you have?
- A safe place of work?
- Safe system of work?
- Safe plant and equipment?
- Safety concise and competent staff?
If you answer is no to any of the above, then you are not complying with Health & Safety legislation.
As we try to change the safety “culture” of a company by applying the science of behavior, one of the main roadblocks is apathy on the part of the management. It’s not just the job of the safety department or safety officer. It necessarily should involve (involve being the operative word) everybody, in order to be an integral implementation with long-term success.
If a Safety Officer/Manager fails in his duty, everybody must analyze a bit and try to find out the reason behind the failure. Employees should reflect on themselves how serious they have been with their own safety. Every employee has a stake in the failure of the safety officer.
Money! Will we ever understand the attitude towards safety in the workplace when, particularly small business owners, gripe about the cost of putting safe practices into place?
If they sit down and think about safety properly, it actually costs very little to put into place correctly. And what it does cost should be reaped back in customers seeing you as a worthy company to deal with. One thing is for sure, putting safety into place costs far less than the prosecution and legal costs when things go wrong!
Some companies resist the impact of safety on production and bottom lines, not necessarily safety itself. Managers forget their management training and focus too much on compliance. What I mean by that is they need to get better at being partners in the total health and safety of the company.
The majority of the owners won’t allow the appropriate level of health and safety to exist until there is a possibility that enforcement happens or there is a serious incident. As of now the owners just hope that nothing happens in their workplace this gives owner/managers a false sense of security.
When meeting company management for the first time the following questions should be asked.
1. What do you do today to create a safe environment?
2. What do your employees do for you today to create a safe environment?
3. How do you measure that they are doing those things?
4. How do you acknowledge that they did those things?
Pauchant & Mitroff argue that ego (or some variant) is in play. Some leaders, they say, have the ability to “go deep”–to acknowledge their organization’s potential for destructive behavior and discuss the possibility without fearing that it somehow reflects poorly on their management or leadership skills. Other leaders, lacking this introspective capacity, resort to various defensive strategies: Some explain the crisis away. Some blame other people. Others feel an urge to act quickly or to make hard and fast decisions. Still others develop chronic anxieties that paralyze their ability to act. And others seem to shut down completely. (“Transforming the crisis-prone organization: Preventing individual, organizational, and environmental tragedies,” 1992, p. 4)