How to Sell Safety

How to Sell Safety

The GFC became a great excuse for many as to why things didn’t go to plan or why vital funds for essential capital works and safety initiatives should be cut. Unfortunately many businesses did fail and many people lost their livelihoods. But, many more survived and some of them even prospered. Many of our better clients saw a drop in sales but also saw the GFC as a great way to bond their workforce in a common cause (survival), consolidate, catch up and become more efficient. One of the things that also improved was safety, which will naturally improve anyway as the culture and efficiency of the organisation improves. The chance to catch a breather from production pressures was also a chance to look at things like the safety culture or climate, procedures, hazards and controls.

One of the most common questions we get asked is “how do I sell the importance of safety to upper management – they just wont put their hands in their pockets”?

Below is an extract from great article by Phil La Duke and first published here in the FABRICATING & METALWORKING MAGAZINE

Phil makes the following important points

  1. PARTNER WITH OPERATIONS TO INCREASE WORKPLACE PRODUCTIVITY
  2. TEACH OPERATIONS WHAT “GOOD” LOOKS LIKE
  3. COMMUNICATE
  4. RUN SAFETY LIKE A BUSINESS

 

SELLING SAFETY REVISITED – Read the full article here

Safety must distinguish discretionary spending from non-discretionary spending and be prepared to explain why a safety initiative must be implemented immediately instead of waiting for a better business climate.

Almost three years ago I introduced the concept of Selling Safety in Tough Times at the National Safety Council conference in Orlando, FL. This speech seemed to resonate with people. In fact, the broad media coverage that followed it clearly struck a nerve. But despite all of that initial excitement – along with the high-profile workplace fatalities in mining, oil and gas, transportation and manufacturing that have happened since – not much actual change has occurred in the collective consciousness with regard to how organizations view and manage the safety of their workers.  READ MORE………..

The bottom line solution to all of this remains the same – Safety must meet the needs of the company leadership and show them how applied safety practices fit them within the organization’s goals and success. With this in mind, let’s revisit how to sell safety in your organization. READ MORE………..

PARTNER WITH OPERATIONS TO INCREASE WORKPLACE PRODUCTIVITY
Nobody wants to see workers injured and nobody wants to get hurt, so safety professionals must get more involved with the day-to-day business team and ultimately become indispensable to Operations. This process begins by recognizing that production is how manufacturers make money. The bottom line for Safety, then, is to communicate to the Production side how injuries cost money, waste valuable resources and tie up cash in a tight money market.

If Safety can help Operations to safely increase production, then everyone wins. For this to happen, Safety must take a leadership role in process improvement, instead of being relegated to simply shooting down other peoples’ ideas as unsafe. READ MORE………..

TEACH OPERATIONS WHAT “GOOD” LOOKS LIKE
Operations leaders do not have time or inclination to listen to a complex model or a lot of safety jargon. When they say “tell us what to do,” they are not copping out or abdicating their responsibility for worker safety. Rather, they are asking for help in operationally defining what real safety looks like. Safety isn’t the absence of injuries; it is the reduction of risk. READ MORE………..

COMMUNICATE
Safety personnel get frustrated because their ideas are rejected out of hand. Operations, in turn, is discouraged by Safety technicians that develop “unworkable solutions.”  The actual problem is often not the solution per se, but how poorly the solution is being communicated. Both parties are to blame for this communication breakdown. Operations must take more of a role in making the decision, and Safety must do a better job of articulating the costs, risks, and benefits of the changes it is advocating.READ MORE………..

RUN SAFETY LIKE A BUSINESS
The economy is not to blame it for your company’s lack of a viable safety model, nor is it responsible for Operations’ lack of interest in cost avoidance instead of cost reductions. A tough economy can actually present an opportunity for a manufacturer to view safety in a new light. We have a huge opportunity to change not only the safety culture of our organizations, but to change forever how our Operations and Safety work together to make the workplace safer. READ MORE………..

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