Not Just a Culture for Safety – Building Community at Work through Safety

When I’m speaking in front of various groups of workers, I often ask each person to scan the room.  I do this in order to let them know that they’re looking at their “families” – their “families at work.”  These are the individuals they spend most time with – sometimes even more than those who they go home to see at the end of their shifts!  I also let each worker know that when they look out for each others’ safety in the workplace, they’re helping to ensure they’ll be able to go home to be with their families and

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Susan Boyle and Your Safety Culture

It’s easy to write people off by their appearance.  Maybe it’s someone who doesn’t dress or speak like you.  Maybe they have different interests than you, your co-workers, or your friends.   Or as one of my business acquaintances often states, “they’re just special!” These “special kinds of people” have a lot to do with making your culture for safety a very special one.  And your safety culture needs to take a better look at these special individuals if you want to turn your followers into everyday leaders, and your culture into a community, a family. In my 30 years of

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Hugo’s Frog & Fish House on Rush: What’s That Got to Do with Safety Culture?

If you know Chicago, you’ve come to realize that it’s no ordinary place.  Chicago is a very special world-class city, with great people and wonderful hospitality.  And whenever I’m in Chicago for business, I often try to visit one of my favorite places, Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House.  It’s a fun place with great food.  Just recently, I walked from my hotel, The Drake on Michigan Avenue, and headed over to Hugo’s.  I was excited about eating there, but the place was packed – standing room only!  After I surveyed the place, I looked for the manager to ask

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Fear: A Major Barrier to Precursor Management and Serious Accident Prevention Within Your Culture for Safety

In January of 1986, along with my coworkers outside of the Kennedy Space Center Headquarters Building, I watched the Space Shuttle Challenger catastrophe and was brought to tears.  It was an event that I will never forget!  Cues to this national disaster have become increasingly evident with regard to the faulty O-ring design.  Initially, O-ring concerns were not highlighted, but once reported and analyzed, the issues remained largely unabated.  At one point, engineers pushed back with their concerns but senior leaders pushed back as well – “let’s launch,” seemed to be what really mattered!   Eventually, an O-ring “burn through” occurred

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Teammates, Coaches, and Cultures for Safety

Arguably, Fulton Walker of the Miami Dolphins had one of the finest special teams’ performances in Super Bowl history.  In 1983, Super Bowl XVII, Fulton had four kickoff returns for 190 yards and one touchdown.  His touchdown of 98-yards was the first-ever kickoff to be returned for a touchdown in Super Bowl history. Fulton’s Super Bowl feat stood for nearly 15 years! Recently, I was talking to Fulton about his record setting return and I told him that I watched it for the first time since 1983 and had gotten goose bumps! Fulton is a friend and former teammate at West Virginia

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The Power of Vision and Your Safety Culture

An increasing number of my clients are recognizing the importance of branding safety in bigger and better ways.  And each of these organizations has realized the far-reaching impact of envisioning, branding, and everything that’s a part of improving their safety culture. Some organizations that desire to clarify their vision want to take EHS performance to another level, while still others want to go further by creating and sustaining a zero-incident safety culture.  Whatever the case, having a clear and compelling vision for safety excellence and aligning your organization’s leadership can have far-reaching impact for long-term success.  Obviously, I mean positive

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