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Reducing Injuries

By Eric Michrowski and Emily Wood We often communicate to employees through trainings, weekly email updates and with posters plastering the walls, that safety must always be our number one priority. But, when our words and actions during times of high pressure emphasize production and on-time performance, the message surrounding safety is lost. It must be acknowledged that production pressure, much like the stress of completing work on time within an office, is inevitable within any industry and cannot be eliminated. However, achieving a balance between production pressure and safety by establishing standard procedures that build a resilient workforce and capture

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By Emily Wood From the constant bombardment of emails, meeting reminders and text messages, to the external noises from equipment, chatty co-workers and phones ringing, workplace distractions are all around us. Studies have shown that 99% of people report their workdays are interrupted by at least one distraction1. Personally, I would reason that no one is able to escape a full day without a single distraction. Pausing one task and responding to an email or having a conversation with colleagues is often seen as multitasking, but multitasking prevents one from giving their full attention to something else, which is the definition

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By Emily Wood With a hiatus from everyday life throughout the past year and a half, it has become evident that proficiency in skills across all aspects of one’s life, from driving to using computer software found only in the office, even our ability to socialize in-person, decreases when done less. This idea highlights people and organizations cannot pick right back up from where they left off in early 2020. Failing to understand the unintended consequence of skill erosion that emerged as people battened down the hatches for months across the world, will increase preventable accidents and incidents in one’s personal

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By Eric Michrowski Observations have been and continue to be a powerful tool for improving safety performance – especially when they are used to their full potential. They allow leaders to recognize good safety behavior and opportunities for improvement. Unfortunately, in too many cases, the focus is placed on the volume of observations instead of the quality conversations taking place. People get stuck in a loop of filling out paperwork for the sake of meeting a certain quota, forgetting to take the quality of observations into account and losing sight of their ultimate goals: preventing injuries and saving lives. In fact, in

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By Josh Williams, Ph.D. Organizational leaders are often looking for “the next big thing” when it comes to safety improvement. This is good! We should all be striving for continuous improvement. Unfortunately, we may abandon lessons learned from the past in search of future improvement. For many years, Tiger Woods famously revamped his near-perfect swing in search of perfection. This resulted in a major slowdown in his collection of major championships. For all leaders, it is important to build on past successes when implementing new improvement efforts. For many years, cognitive approaches were used to influence employee attitudes for safety. Recent developments

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By Josh Williams, Ph.D. The Challenge Although workplace incident rates have steadily declined by 28% over the last decade, rates for serious injuries and fatalities (SIFs) have remained virtually unchanged.1 Further, organizations often focus on “recordables” without adequately addressing, prioritizing, and communicating about incidents (and close calls) with SIF potential. As an example, someone spraining an ankle falling 20 feet from a telephone line is quite different than the same person doing so stepping out of a truck. Leaders need to reorient their thinking regarding SIFs. Recordables and first-aids should continue to be monitored, addressed, and discussed. However, overemphasizing these metrics does a

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