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Is the Safety Culture in Your Workplace Evolving ... From Infancy to Maturity?

The start of a new year is frequently when many companies reexamine their safety and health management systems as well as their safety cultures.

As safety and health professionals, we often use the term "safety culture," especially when we focus to instill qualities that motivate workers to achieve safety excellence. Creating and implementing a real safety culture in the workplace takes honest commitment from all workers, including management, since it involves values, attitudes, perceptions, competencies and behavior patterns.

Mylene Kellerman

Mylene Kellerman
Assistant Director and Safety and Health Supervisor

A safety culture is not created overnight; it is ever-evolving. During its infancy, it needs a lot of caring and nurturing. An effective place to begin is by incorporating safety into your company's mission statement and strategic plan. Other recommended best practices include integrating OSHA required safety programs, incident/accident investigations, safety education and training, job hazard analyses and periodic comprehensive safety and health worksite audits. Conducted over time, these practices assist a company's safety culture to evolve proactively and effectively with your business.

Safety is not a "cost of doing business." Studies show time and again that when the safest and best standards are implemented and maintained in the workplace, a safety culture will prove profitable, prevent incidents and accidents and, consequently, reduce workers' compensation premiums.

As a company's safety culture evolves and matures, workers become personally committed. They take greater responsibility for their own safety, the safety of their co-workers and for their work environment. Remember, a safe workplace benefits from higher retention of quality workers, increased productivity and increased profit.

The USF SafetyFlorida Consultation Program can assist and guide you and provide you the tools to help you establish a safety culture in your workplace–all at no charge. Request a consultation visit today so that 2011 is a safe one