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If you've ever needed a good argument for why safety is tied directly to profits, this book is it.
Safety suffers from an identity crisis. Senior management view safety as legislation and a legal requirement. They see it as a cost of doing business or that which gets in the way when there is a production crunch on. Safety is an add-on – the enforcement part of a compliance program.
Safety managers have done a terrible disservice to safety. They focus on metrics: Lost Time Injuries/Incidents (LTI), Total Recordable Injury Frequency (TRIF) rates, Near-Misses, First-aids, Leading and Lagging Indicators etc. Attend almost any safety meeting and see these numbers take up the lion’s share of the discussion during the meeting. The tug-of-war between production (revenue) and safety (expense) causes senior managers to find ways to cut expenses.
From the outset, it would seem that the safety manager’s primary responsibility is compliance. Safety managers must ensure that the company is in compliance with legislation and regulations. In addition, they are also responsible for reducing costs and worker insurance premiums. The job is to cut workplace injuries and incidents. That reduces costs. In no way do executives expect that the safety manager will be responsible for revenue generation.
Safety is not considered as a way to generate revenue. It is seen only as a way to spend it. That's why safety is one of the first programs to feel the swift slice of the scissors in a downturn. The term, Running With Scissors, references this point.
But, no company has ever cut their way to greatness. No company has ever increased revenues by cutting safety. No company has ever had a continuous return on investment by cutting the contribution to an investment.
Most safety managers lack familiarity and expertise in arguing safety at a business model level. So safety is not argued as an economics case. It is presented as an enforcement initiative. To enforce compliance, employees are exposed to gruesome injury photos and graphic videos. Employees, at times, are forced to listen a worker’s story of how they lost a limb or how they became disfigured. It’s the shock-and-awe program of getting mere compliance from employees. “Fail to follow protocols,” you hear them say, “and you too could lose a body part.”
What-if’s and maybe’s don’t sell safety well.
Safety is not just an injury-prevention program. Safety is a production stoppage-reduction program and a philosophy to ensure that companies care about their most important asset, their people. Safety is designed to ensure that people stay safe and production is not interrupted. It's the classic win-win. It keeps cash-flow going: both for the employee and for the company.
Like a financial plan that gets you to retirement, safety is that vehicle that gets employees to their golden years. Without safety, what is the point of investing in a retirement plan? Without cash-flow, there is no way to contribute to retirement. You need both.
Safety is the same for companies. Without it, injury and incidents will bankrupt a company. Staff will turn over, attrition will be high and costs will be astronomical. Reputations will be soiled. Employer-of-choice status will be lost. Scrutiny from government inspectors will slow down production to a painful pace. Safety, and even more so safe production, keeps the company liquid. Safety ensures cash-flow – for both employees and the company.
Cutting safety is like rolling the dice with revenue-generation. Safety is not a compliance program. It is not an add-on. Safety is a corporate value – a way of respecting and caring for the people that keep the company running.
No company can ever sustain long-term success by Running With Scissors. In the following pages, you will find 10 Reasons To Invest in Safety In Slow Times.
- File Size: 387 KB
- Print Length: 50 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: ZeroSpeak Coporation (June 25, 2015)
- Publication Date: June 25, 2015
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B010GLMSOI
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- X-Ray: Not Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Screen Reader: Supported
- Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled