What else did you miss? Here are the key takeaways from each one of our sessions:
Safety From the Front-Line to the Backfield
Lance Briggs, Former Linebacker for the Chicago Bears
Concussions/ CTE are a massive problem facing the NFL and its players.
Physicians, trainers, and players are growing increasingly sensitive to the warning signals of severe concussions. However, owners and coaches have different incentives than players. They have focused more on PR than player safety. Recent rule changes (that were not discussed with players) like the “roughing the passer” rule are evidence of this.
The fans are the key to putting pressure on NFL franchises to ensure player safety. They will protest with their wallets and their viewership if players are treated unfairly.
A safer game can still be entertaining. Football will always be a rough sport, but change is required to ensure that the next generation of young players is attracted to the game.
The Impact of a High Participation Safety Culture
Calvin Benchimol, Director of Corporate Development, eCompliance
An EHS Daily Survey revealed that 98% of Safety Professionals believe that front-line participation will improve safety performance.
Meanwhile, a Stanford researcher interviewed 40 eCompliance customers to track safety performance between 2012-2017. From that data, eCompliance quantitatively define participation as:
• Adoption Rate: The number of employees actively participating in safety activities as a percentage of total employees in the company
• Activity Rate: The number of activities these participating employees conducted
We then rated all 40 customers from the Stanford study and divided them into quartiles. Our research showed that the top quartile companies reduced their lost-time-injuries 3.5x more than the bottom quartile, while they reduced incidents 2x more.
Why did some succeed in achieving top-tier performance, while others got stuck? To find out, we interviewed the top performers from the study to look for patterns. These interviews revealed that the best companies all took these 5 steps:
1. The CEO committed to safety and staked their reputation in a public endorsement
2. The safety leader rises to the strategy table alongside operations and sales
3. Employees buy-into the program
4. Managers develop safety reflex where they respond quickly to input from the front-lines
5. The business maintains safety velocity, while they scale the program across the organization and maintain focus over time
Tweak Your Safety Paradigm: Manage Risk
Ward Metzler, Principal, Dupont Sustainable Solutions
There is a movement to an Independent and Interdependent Safety Culture from a Reactive and Dependent Safety Culture. That shift is, “I work safely because I want to,” instead of, “I work safely because I have to.”
Safety-thinking is transforming itself into risk-thinking, which is embedded in an overall thinking of operational excellence.
The traditional management systems have worked well for a period of time, but we’ve hit a plateau. We need to consider risk-based thinking to take it to the next level.
A risk-focused management system helps provide the best of both worlds, while it’s driven by effective leadership appealing to the individual front-line worker.
The Future of EHS: Panel Discussion
Steve Chaplin, VP of EHS at EllisDon – Matt James, Director of HSE at Spark Power
Safety leaders are moving away from being “safety cops” and towards a better understanding of how and why people make safety decisions. For today’s workforce, It’s less necessary for safety leaders to have a legislative background, and more important that they can be change-agents.
Millennial-aged workers are bringing a new perspective on risk and a higher level of technological savvy. They should be incorporated into risk reduction activities, but with the understanding that they learn differently and solve problems differently than previous generations.
The panel also discussed how safety leadership will rise in the ranks of the organizational structure. However, there were mixed views of how far safety leaders will rise.
On the one hand, many executives continue to see safety as a cost center. On the other hand, some forward-thinking executives are beginning to promote safety leaders to the executive table, recognizing that enterprise value is materially affected by the risk of serious workplace incidents.
Are you an Accidental Change Agent?
Star Hofer, Director of Customer Success, eCompliance
Over 50 thought leaders shared ideas on how to drive change within a shifting learning landscape. The key takeaways were:
• Before a solution is purchased, ask the front-line workers what they are looking for in a solution. Get the buy-in early
• Take into consideration the culture when implementing across multiple sites/locations. One location may have a different culture than another
• Frequently collect feedback throughout the process and incorporate the changes as you go to gain trust in the field
For more ideas, check out the blog coming out soon.
Faster, Smarter, Safer: The Future of EHS
Adrian Bartha, CEO, eCompliance
Adrian presented the findings of our artificial intelligence safety experiment, conducted in partnership with Microsoft.
Transparent and measured safety participation continues to be a key factor in safety performance. Top quartile safety performers using eCompliance record 50 hazards and near misses for every negative event. That ratio is only 5:1 for the bottom quartile performers.
Meanwhile, the top performers saw increased incident reporting, but less actual injuries, while they were 50% more likely to complete action items on schedule.
Benchmarks like these help companies set objective measures of performance, gain buy-in from the C-suite, and prioritize/ position the right initiatives. We need to move from a ‘fuzzy’ link between our actions and results in the safety profession. We need a clear, proven and measurable link, just like other departments and professions have.
Top quartile performers among eCompliance users are already reducing 72% of their injuries by sticking to the 5 steps we mentioned above (The Impact of a High Participation Safety Culture session). 90% of all injuries are preventable by using the existing methods from the top quartile firms.
Meanwhile, machine learning/artificial intelligence provides a way to reinforce the right behaviors, with the right people, at the right time. Counterintuitively, AI actually has the potential to increase human-to-human interaction and strengthen your safety culture.
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