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Modern day top leadership engagement is continuing to trend away from the traditional command-and-control approach. Far from the “I think it, you do it” model, the total human health approach to top management is all about leadership—curious, engaged and relational. Safety isn’t left to chance or considered the responsibility of just the safety director; safety is managed and led just like every other operation in the company, from accounts receivable to customer experience.

Equipment of any kind needs to be accompanied by training, evaluation, inspection, follow-up and, most importantly, an operator who understands the potential hazards and carries out their duties in a safe manner. Safety is everyone’s responsibility throughout the entire organization, and everyone needs to be fully and thoughtfully engaged. Proper training, culture and mindset is the key to success and lower incidence rates.

The roadmap to building a strong health and safety culture begins with improving new hire safety orientations and intentional incident investigations. It seems simple, but the reality is that this journey does not happen by itself. We must be committed to safety as a core value every day and in every situation to achieve industry-leading results. Leaders and all team members must be committed to supporting each other to drive results.

Matt Abeles, ABC vice president of construction technology and innovation, sits down with Autodesk University host Eric Thomas to talk about the ABC Tech Alliance and how it is revolutionizing the construction industry, making everyone safer along the way.

Safety training equips supervisors to lead and manage projects, people, processes and policies. This training is enhanced through frequent, regularly scheduled safety meetings involving supervisory staff and the company safety director. These intentional, agenda-driven meetings go beyond training and education, helping to develop relationships as challenges and successes are shared.

Intentional, purposeful two-way communication is vital to a successful workday. Daily communication builds resilient relationships and enables a group to accomplish mission-driven tasks with a high degree of safety, quality and effectiveness. Daily toolbox talks and consistent start-up inspections create the environment where both communication and safety coexist successfully. The ABC STEP Safety Management System is designed to help you accomplish this to strengthen your safety culture. 

Some would say safety is common sense, others know it’s about relationships and intentional planning, equipping and supporting. When safety isn’t integrated with full communication from the beginning, the workforce could be put at higher risk if time, logistics and budgets are stretched too thin. Incorporate pre-planning for safety in every aspect of the job to ensure your team returns home safely at the end of every shift.

Safety training, education and professional development are all critical to a top-performing company. These investments can powerfully shape culture, reinforce expectations, provide valuable feedback and equip the workforce to meet or exceed expectations. When people are engaged and equipped in a way that is meaningful to them, they will choose to work safely because they want to. And they will continue to do so if they are supported with proper planning and resources. This creates a strong and effective health and safety culture.

Safety rules affect safety culture. Seeking workforce input on procedures is vital to creating that culture, as a key component to ensure safety goals are attained is workforce engagement. When developing or updating a safety program, you must ask your team for input, suggestions and feedback to ensure buy-in, understanding and adherence. Learn how to communicate both universal and situational safety rules and policies.

Planning for a successful safety program starts with setting goals, implementing proper recordkeeping procedures and ensuring documentation is correct. ABC's STEP Safety Management System provides the framework to drive improvements in construction safety programs through recordkeeping and benchmarking in 25 key components. Discover four helpful tips for submitting OSHA incident data. 

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