Sack the Bloody Idiots
NB: I’ve had a few nasty emails in response to this article accusing me condoning ‘illegal’ and ‘reckless’ behavior – please read this article carefully and have a good think before deciding whether I should be punished as well!
Not a day goes by when I don’t see on Facebook or LinkedIn, a photo like this one, of what looks like an obvious breach of ‘recognised safety procedures’, mostly from 3rd world countries. We then read lots of chest beating comments like “sack these idiots immediately and their supervisor – who cares if it’s xmas, it’s for their own good” or “that wouldn’t happen in the US – we have proper safety cultures and systems” (even though the people in the photo may think it a little silly that anyone can just walk into a US Kmart and buy a gun – but that is a whole other debate!).
How can safety people expect engagement and learning in a culture of mistrust and punishment?
Rob Sams wrote in A Culture of Care (and sackings…): “Do you see a day when ‘safety’ will be about people, about understanding, about empathy and compassion, or will control continue to reign the day?”
Let’s try something different for a bit of fun and learning:
Assuming this isn’t just photoshopped, imagine you are one of the guys in the bucket and know this job far better than anyone on LinkedIn – What are some of the reasons why you may have thought this was a good idea at the time (this is you remember so of course it’s not because you were stupid or evil)?? What pressures (time, money, orders) were you under? What discussions did you have? What decisions did you make and why? What extra precautions did you take? Had you done this many times before? Was there a better way available?
Then, after you ‘got caught’ or had a chance to reflect, what do you reckon the best outcome for all would be?