Behavior-based safety is something every organization tries to implement in their workplace, but more often than not, this process fails for about 70% of companies because they either don’t take it seriously enough or limit their approach to attaining this change.
Planning and implementing positive changes in a workplace may seem easy on paper, but when it comes to bringing change in employee behavior, you’ll find it a lot harder than you thought. Therefore, every organization needs to work as a team to bring this change. But to do that, there are some mistakes you should avoid at all costs. We’ve discussed them in this blog.
Don’t Just Observe
Most organizations believe BBS means just observing employees’ behaviors in the workplace and having someone note down what they’re doing and not doing to ensure their safety. But the problem with this approach is that it limits the entire training to just “observe” and “learn” which is an oversimplification of the entire process.
The biggest problem with this approach is that organizations assuming they’re following safe practices, even when they’re not. And since employees are aware that they’re being observed, they’re pressured into adopting safe behaviors in just a moment they know they’re being observed and avoid it in all other moments, it’s not a one-stop solution to keeping them safe. The major goal of BBS is to ensure that behavior is changing in the workplace and to do that, proper detailed training on a practical level needs to be implemented than just observational change.
Employers need to understand that positive reinforcement is the key to replacing unsafe behaviors with safe behavior practices. If workers are rewarded for following safe practices, it’s more likely for those behaviors to be repeated. But if a workplace is following the same old reinforcement tactics, it’s likelier for the same unsafe behaviors to be repeated than applying new approaches for employees to stay safer.
We’re aware that unsafe behaviors are repeated this much because they are reinforced to i.e. if a person takes short-cuts while performing tasks, it’s because that saves time, if a person doesn’t wear PPE during hazardous tasks, it’s because they feel more comfortable and less warm without it.
To avoid this and make sure BBS training is properly worked out, organizations need to deliver the right reinforcements that eliminate negative, unsafe behaviors and implement positive ones. Like providing the right personal protective equipment for the right jobs, educating employees, and rewarding them when they follow the right SOPs.
Don’t Limit Training to Employees
Another major mistake every manager needs to avoid while implementing behavior-based safety is limiting this training only to employees, instead of having it be implemented across the entire management body. This includes getting feedback from everyone in the organization, assessing everyone’s contribution to the process, and keeping a report of how much company practices have improved since the implementation began and what can be done to bring further change and promote safety.
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Take Active Responsibility
Every good organization needs to acknowledge the fact that behavior-based safety isn’t only the employees’ responsibility. If the management takes an active part in bringing about positive, safe work practices to the spotlight, employees feel more appreciated and cared for than when it’s all handed over to employees to take care of themselves. Making it entirely an employees’ job increases frustration in the workplace and results in passive behaviors that again lead to unsafe practices rather than the opposite.
Everyone Should be Part of the Process
The thing about bringing change in an organization’s overall behavioral practices is that everyone needs to be part of the process and actively behave to lead to positive changes, creating a safer work environment for everyone. For this purpose, every person from higher management to lower ranks needs to receive the same amount of training and education to ensure everyone is clear about which practices to follow and what they should avoid altogether.
Organizations need to strategically tackle safety issues among their employees and to do that, they have to take an active part in bringing about positive changes.
These were the five big mistakes you should avoid when it comes to implementing behavior-based safety training in the workplace. Remember that this isn’t something that just involves the use of apparel or gloves, it has to involve bringing active permanent change in everyone’s behavior at the workplace to make sure they’re consciously following safe practices. If you’re looking for more information on this or other such topics, visit Elite-Leather Creations.