“Step up for Safety” – Safety Leadership at Every Level

Michelle MachenMauser News, Safety

Mauser Packaging Solutions’ 2023 Safety Month theme – “Step up for Safety” – challenges every employee to be a leader in regard to safety. While responsibility for safety begins at the leadership level, when it comes to safety everyone is a leader regardless or job role or responsibilities.
Safety leadership does not have to be a person in a traditional leadership role (Lead hand, Supervisor, Manager). A safety leader is somebody who not only exhibits personal safety behaviors but inspires others to do the same. These are people who not only follow safety protocols precisely but speak up in a constructive way when they see that others could be doing something in a safer manner. They acknowledge employees working safely and take time to listen to employees’ safety concern. Having additional safety leaders results in more sustained, consistent and positive safety performance and behaviors.

A key attribute of any type of leader is the willingness to accept responsibility. By engaging in root cause analysis of safety incidents we can realize there are many opportunities to accept responsibility and effect change. It is important to engage in root cause analysis for safety incidents to fix problems, move away from blaming people and hold people accountable. Through root cause analysis we realize, change in behavior or circumstances at any level of the root cause analysis could have prevented the incident in question.

Every employee has a responsibility and right hold others accountable for safety. Every employee shares the responsibility of making sure everyone goes home safe every day. We can achieve this by following the safety procedures that are in place and taking personal ownership for ensuring safety is the first element in every decision we make. With this responsibility comes the right to stop work and report unsafe conditions or actions. If you are not sure, you should at report the situation to a supervisor or manager. If your “gut” is telling you something is unsafe, then it probably is.

Saying we are committed to safety, implementing the right policies and procedures and having the elements of safety culture means nothing means nothing unless it is embodied and practiced by employees. Safety is personal. So personal that you bring it to work and you take it take it home. When you are mowing the lawn or hanging Christmas lights, what safety example are you setting for your neighbors or kids? No matter where you are or what you are doing, safety matters.

When we all accept responsibility for creating the environment or circumstances that facilitate safety, we can effectuate meaningful change that ensures a safe workplace for everyone. It’s time to “Step up for Safety”. What actions will you take?