One of my favorite sports (to watch) is tennis. In tennis, there are only 2 players, one on either side of the net. It’s opponent against opponent. There’s no coach or team to rely on, just the raw talent and skills of each person. If someone has an off day, it may affect the outcome. It’s exhilarating to watch a contender reach deep inside, playing to win when the ball is not going their way. Due to their consistent practice, these pros are able to make shots even when they may not be at their best physically.
Just like other professionals, we need consistency when it comes to safety.
This is the second article in a 3-part series.
Last month we covered ways to stay up-to-date with changing regulations.
Next month, we’ll cover how to ensure training is done and handling the paperwork.
This month’s topic is how to train to ensure that safety standards are maintained consistently throughout the company.
One of the first things to do is set up a training calendar. How often to train and on what?
- What do the regulations require? Companies are required to train employees on how to protect themselves from the hazards they are exposed to during the course of their work.
- Another thing to keep in mind, some training requires periodic refresher training.
For example: Forklift training – every 3 years
First aid/CPR training – every 2 years
HAZWOPER & Bloodborne Pathogens- annually
- How often will you train? Set up a monthly 30-minute training schedule or a schedule that works for you. Make sure it’s a schedule that the company will be able to keep. Be consistent.
- Most in-house staff (usually supervisors) can handle training. Provide training material for their use.
- Training (first aid, Hazwoper, etc.) may require a professional and more than 30 minutes to complete the training.
- Construction companies in California are required to provide a toolbox talk to field personnel every 10 working days (most companies train weekly). These are short (10-15 minute) safety meetings that cover construction hazards. Toolbox topics should cover the hazards construction workers are exposed to. Since 80% of construction injuries and fatalities are caused by the focus four these are always good topics. The Focus Four, sometimes called the Fatal Four, consist of
- Struck by – falling/flying objects or heavy equipment
- Caught in between – heavy equipment and a stationary object or collapsing trench walls
Other topics: Personal protective equipment, weather, environment, hazardous materials, accident prevention, or tool safety. (If you need Toolbox Talks, we got you covered.)
- Manufacturing and Construction companies focus on the plant floor employees and field workers and sometimes forget that office personnel are employees that need to be part of a consistent safety training program.
- Supervisors/foremen are not adequately addressed. Supervisory personnel need training on how to safely perform the duties required by their position.
If safety training is done consistently, employees will be aware of its importance and there will be a “Magic” shift in the company’s safety culture. Safety will become automatic and ingrained.
Other benefits of safety training are:
- Improved employee retention
- Customer satisfaction
- Improved productivity
If you need assistance in setting up your safety training program, please contact me for a FREE consultation, firstname.lastname@example.org. Also email me, if you need toolbox talks.