Five tips to reduce the risk of employee injuries without going broke
Safety might not be at the top of your priority list as an employer. You might consider a severe injury to a worker a remote possibility and hardly worth worrying about. Or, you might believe there's no way to get the job done safely without spending heaps of money (that you just don't have).
It's time to change your mindset. Improving performance safety doesn't have to be a pricy task. Plus, it's so important! If you don't, you might discover the hard way that it doesn't take many injuries to put your company in real financial peril…
The belief that you must choose between workplace safety and making a profit is an old, deeply-held mindset. Unfortunately, it's just plain wrong!
Here are seven approaches you can adopt to reduce the risk of worker injuries. And, don't worry – they won't add prohibitive costs.
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Five fool-proof tips for prevent injuries among your employees
#1: Be smart when you hire
When sales exceed production capacity, you might be tempted to make a quick hire. But this you mustn't do! Instead, consider the risk associated with hiring incompetent people. Someone who's far more likely to become injured. Screen candidates to ensure they have the skills to be successful – and work safely.
#2: Make training your staff a priority
I can't express the importance of training enough. Share safety techniques with your staff. Even highly skilled or experienced workers need safety updates. Counting on common sense to keep workers safe is a recipe for disaster. Common sense isn't always a common practice!
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#3: Demand safe work practices
Begin by believing there's always time to do things safely. Never accept workers performing in unsafe conditions. Then practise what you preach. If you choose productivity over safety, you'll send out the wrong message. Aim to share the vision of a safe workplace with your staff. Engage in making that actively happen. Your workers will only support your vision if they believe it's real.
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#4: Provide the right tools and equipment
Workers can't take reasonable precautions without the right equipment. The cost of steel-toed shoes or safety glasses is minuscule compared with the cost of trauma surgery. There's a strong human drive towards expediency. And many workers will risk using the wrong tool or taking a shortcut just to get a job done.
#5: Look for ways to improve safety
It's desirable to find work methods and achieve faster results at less cost. And it's necessary you make seeking ways to eliminate risk just as desirable. Spend time with your workers and brainstorm ideas. Ask them for tips on safety ideas. Solicit their concerns about safety at work. And, most importantly, act on their suggestions.
Safety can be a hard sell for some people. Some workers take a 'you've got to die of something' attitude. Others are willing to take unreasonable, even reckless risks. You as the employers must watch out for workers who take risks. If you don't, your company's future will be at risk. A strong demand for safe work practices can mean the difference between success and failure.
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