I think too many people say, “Our organization isn’t good with change. Our people don’t like it.” It’s all about how you approach this change. You can execute any change in any organization, even if your people don’t like change.
Let’s take getting COR certified (or “Getting COR” as it’s also called), for example. This can be a huge undertaking and a big change for any company. So, you need to be strategic and systematic in how you approach it.
A lot of companies know they need COR, but they don’t know what’s really involved. They often say, “We need to get COR, so we can compete for new business. We’re losing business opportunities because of this right now, so we need to get this up and running in 8-12 months.”
But, once you get into the process, you learn the goal isn’t feasible. You need to get your company up to COR standards, and then prove you can sustain it for 12 months. That’s the essence of COR, regardless of the province. You need to prove consistency.
Here’s how these companies should be looking at COR.
For some companies, COR will be the biggest organizational change they ever go through. But they may not know that just yet.
To tackle COR, we need to start with the planning stage. The first step in planning is to invest time in a gap analysis on where the business is as it relates to the COR standard. The same could be said if you are new to the organization and want to elevate the safety program to the next level. The gap analysis might take you a week (or weeks) to really understand where the workforce is.
You need to start with basic questions like:
• What milestones should we have in place and what resources are needed?
• Do you know all the elements that are in COR?
• Do you know what an auditor might be checking?
• Do you have consistent evidence for the past 12 months?
Now, let’s take that information and find your gaps. After looking at the big picture you will ask, “Can we feasibly do this in, say, six months?” There’s no way. You have 8 months of work before you start to sustain things for another year.
And then, once you have those gaps figured out you can say, “Okay, now we have an appreciation of what this change needs.”
Remember That PEOPLE Drive Change
As a safety software provider, companies often come to us because they need a tool to help them achieve COR.
Tools are great, but you can’t automate safety. Someone needs to drive the change. The tool by itself is never the answer. The tool is the complement.
A tool can do things like enable front-line workers to identify hazards and carry out inspections from their phones. But you still need to sell employees on why they should take time out of their day to do it.
If you don’t make that case to them, everyone will have a really great safety app on their phone, but everyone will forget their password because nobody is using it.
Now, the tool that was supposed to help them get there is going to bear the fault for their failures. They thought that the tool was the answer or the savior.
Socializing the Change
As with any change management, you need to socialize this within your company. You need to tell everybody that you’re trying to accomplish something, how great it will be, and how it will benefit them personally.
If you’re not socializing what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, the benefits are going to be lost on everyone. You need to explain “the whys.” And then when you get to the whys, you need to continue to explain them over and over again. Repetition is key.
After your staff buys into the new safety system, you need to tell them they are doing it right. If you’re not giving affirmation, you’re not fulfilling the full change management cycle.
When they start using the tools and start showing results, you need to tell your employees:
“Well done, everyone. We are doing an exceptional job of getting these inspections done. This is going to help us be a stronger business and a safer workforce. And because of our improved safety record, we’re going to have a positive outcome when we bid on big projects.”
Can you get COR certified in 6 months? No. But, if you plan properly by identifying all of the gaps, and properly socializing the changes that you need to make, you can certainly lay the foundation in 6 months.
… even if your organization “doesn’t like change.”
Are you looking to get your company COR compliant? Don’t do it alone. We can help! Feel free to download a very informative webinar that teaches you How to Conquer COR.