ROMEOVILLE, Ill. – Safety managers take on the hefty responsibility of keeping employees safe. They choose PPE, employ security measures, conduct training, and so much more.
At Magid Glove & Safety, Susan Punter takes on this important role as the manager of environmental health and safety. As a leading manufacturer and distributor in the industry whose mission is to keep workers safe, Magid asked Punter if she’d be willing to share her secrets with other managers and professionals across the nation.
Here are five of Punter’s safety managers’ secrets to make the job easier:
Secret #1 – Don’t Reward Workers by Counting Safety Incidents
Counting safety incidents is typical and is something all safety managers should be doing. But rewarding workers for completing a number of days without an incident is where things get tricky. By rewarding workers for beating a safety record, you’re encouraging employees to not report safety incidents for fear of ruining the party or reward for everyone else. Instead, try a proactive rewards program by celebrating workers for reporting near-misses or unsafe acts or conditions.
Secret #2 – Talk About the Why
Always talk about the why. You can give everyone a list of rules but talking about the list of potential injuries that can result from breaking the rules is what will hit home. Have employees explain step by step what they are doing and why they are doing something. This will help everyone understand the
risks involved. As a result, workers will be more willing to follow new safety measures because they will understand the dangers associated with the task at hand.
Secret #3 – Know What Happens When You’re Not There
Safety is what happens when nobody is watching so It’s important to figure out what happens on the floor when you’re not there. Observe from afar, empower point people for safety, and put systems in place to create an effective safety culture that will function even when you’re not there. It’s no simple task! Learn more about how to get workers engaged and committed to safety with this Safety Matters Resource article from Magid.
Secret #4 – Ask Employees What They’re Interested In
Instead of starting every meeting with a general and bland safety tip, consider ways to spice up the tip with content that employees are interested in. This could even be a safety tip that’s not related to work, for example, a winter tip could be five items to keep in your car in case you get stranded. At Magid, we host 3- to 5-minute Toolbox Talks. During these talks, we let team members pick a topic that’s important to them. This can be something as simple as how to lift safely with a short demo.
Secret #5 – Use Your Resources
It can be difficult to understand OSHA regulations, but the OSHA website has many resources to help break material down such as letters of interpretation. Plus, there are plenty of free safety resources online to help with things like safety training, building your safety culture, and even choosing PPE. One example is Magid’s Safety Matters Resource Center, which even offers free webinars, posters and samples.