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Occupational safety requires courage!
I am sure most of you will spontaneously respond “yes, of course!”. But if I ask you what this actually means for you, what will your answer be? Many leaders point to wearing PPE when they enter the production area. That is a good start but certainly not enough when it comes to providing a positive example. Please ask yourself the following questions:
What is your personal attitude towards safety?
Is your behaviour always exemplary?
Do you always use the handrail on stairs?
Do you stand still while on the phone, ideally in a safe place?
Do you make eye-contact with a fork lift truck driver before walking past him?
How do you approach employees wearing more PPE than you do?
How interested are you in safety topics? Do you raise these with your employees?
How emotionally engaged are you when instructing your employees?
What is your stance when there is a conflict between productivity and safety?
Do you address unsafe behaviour directly or do you walk past and send an email?
Do you involve your employees in finding safe solutions? ....
I hope that these questions will help you to reflect on the importance of leading by example. Your employees will pick up very quickly whether safety really matters to you!