Tired of Safety?

Tired of safety? You’re not alone.

Have you ever heard “safety is a waste of time”?  Me too. Many times.

I’ve also heard complaints of managers that don’t visit sites yet make policy, unrealistic expectations of executive because of bonuses, policies that are enacted and never removed even when conditions change… the list goes on. As you know, this breeds apathy in the work place.

We call this Safety Fatigue.

You may be sick from Safety if:

  • You are feeling shortness of …patience,
  • Your eyes are strained from rolling into the back of your head, and
  • You feel an absence of brain power – usually from things going in one ear and out the other.
This isn’t your worker tired on the job, they are tired of your bad procedures.

…for optimal safety, we want to find the simplest and most effective methods of making workers safe

At EHS, we define Safety Fatigue as a workplace and worker condition where apathy towards policy and procedure is heightened to the point of not only ineffectiveness but also increasing risk/negative value.

Though counter-intuitive, effective safety is about doing the minimum possible. It is the minimum possible to achieve the maximum outcome. For perfect safety, we could encumber our workers with rules, policies, procedures and PPE – ensuring they never work.

But for optimal safety, we want to find the simplest and most effective methods of making workers safe.

If I thought what you say about safety was important, I would do it.

If you want to make the workplace safe, you may have to reduce your safety practices. But what will you choose?

Our world is constantly engaged in determining new initiatives to make life safer but our observation is that most of these measures are ineffective and most certainly not founded in data. Workers don’t have faith in management with respect to safety or see the value in reporting.

In working with our clients, we have observed a tendency for some to, out of lack of better direction, implement new policy and never remove it, never consider long term effectiveness or re-evalute the risk/reward.  

Follow us next week when we tell you more about safety fatigue and our view of the future!