While specific numbers are not available, it is estimated that there are thousands of injuries in Canadian workplaces each year, and more than 350 deaths. Safety standards, specific to your industry, are important to help keep your workers safe. The key to a successful safety program is employee engagement. In fact, when employees are actively focused on safety, there are 62 percent fewer accidents.
Good communication is essential to a successful program. Ask employees for ideas on how to improve workplace safety and get their feedback on what is already in place. Make sure to listen and be respectful of new ideas. Keep reading for additional ways to promote safety in the workplace along with ideas for safety gifts and incentives to reward your team.
Designate in-office safety leaders
Select several employees who can help lead safety initiatives. In addition to being experts on all safety programs and strategies, they can help engage colleagues. Encourage safety officers to have one-on-one conversations with co-workers on a regular basis to help keep safety top of mind. Use a workplace safety promotional item, like a safety keychain, to say thanks.
Recognize good deeds
When team members are given positive reinforcement after a job or action, they are more likely to repeat that behaviour (PDF). Showing appreciation for employees’ safe work habits can be as simple as a friendly chat or an email to the entire time. Take it up a notch by giving out a small safety gift, such as a Star Stress Reliever. Get employees even more involved by asking them to nominate top safety performers.
Show them the numbers
Ask your team to help establish safety goals and milestones. Keep office safety stats in a visible area to help motivate employees. Show them how their actions, and those of their coworkers, directly affect your company’s safety goals. Make a big deal of any goal you accomplish. Buying lunch or holding a thank-you celebration are fun ways to congratulate the team on their safety achievements. Hand out T-shirts imprinted with your safety message as a reward.
Break for safety
Schedule regular safety breaks each day that include quick team discussions or opportunities to ask questions and get feedback about safety issues. Use this time to encourage employees to stretch. Stretching helps ease muscle pain, loosens sore joints and helps prevent injuries caused by repetitive motion. To make stretching in the office a breeze, give employees workplace safety promotional items to help them loosen up, such as a yoga mat or massage ball.
Start using these ideas to promote safety in the workplace
Now’s the time to put these safety concepts into action. These ideas to promote safety in the workplace, along with safety gifts and incentives, will give employees ownership over your company’s safety strategy, ensuring safety programs are well-remembered and practiced daily.