There is no such thing as a safety culture
Hopefully most people can see right through meaningless and demoralising slogans like “safety first” and “zero harm”? The employees certainly can and you will see them cringe at the big sign out the front when then arrive at work each day. The ONLY reason that businesses exist is to make money. If the safety of their employees was the prime concern and they were committed to absolute zero harm then they would have no choice than to just shut the gates – then who wins?. A successful company embraces risk, understands it and uses it for good. They make money through reputation for making good quality products and have long-term, motivated, happy, healthy and uninjured employees. (Recommended reading: “Risk Makes Sense” ). The point is that safety cannot fly on its own, trying to implement new safety initiatives and create a “safety culture” in a company with less overall good culture than a tub of yogurt is like trying to push the proverbial up a very steep hill.
I recommend this no holds barred article by Phil LaDuke from his blog: http://philladuke.wordpress.com/
Mind Your Own Business: The Far From the Last Word On Building A “Safety Culture”
“There is a nearly ubiquitous conversation ragging in the safety forums: how can one create a “safety culture” within my organization. This debate is troubling from a couple of perspectives. First, there really isn’t any such thing as a “safety culture” the fact that people blather on about this topic shows a very deep ignorance of organizational culture. Every organization of more than five people has a culture. In simplest terms, a culture is the codified collection of the norms, shared values, and rules of an organization. Cultures evolve to protect the organization’s interests and to determine what is acceptable behavior. In so doing, corporate culture makes it possible to govern the organization.
In some organization’s the corporate culture is so strong that changing from within is almost impossible, in fact, it is far more likely that a new hire will adopt the corporate culture rather than change it, no matter how strong the desire or ardently the new employee works for change.” READ MORE…………….