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Safety Culture and Leadership Programs

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit". Aristotle

Overview

Safety culture is the collection of beliefs, perceptions and values that employees share in relation to risks within an organisation, such as a workplace or community.

It is well established, that leaders can take conscious steps towards influencing these beliefs, perceptions and values. A good safety culture will often reflect senior and operational management promotion of the organisational commitment to safety, realistic practices for managing risks, creation of an environment that celebrates continuous organisational learning and a consistent care and concern for safety being shared across the workplace.

Evidence from research commissioned by Regulators such as the Health and Safety Executive (UK), Safe Work Australia and Workplace Health and Safety Queensland all point to the importance of high standards of health and safety on achieving a positive workplace safety culture. The culture of an organisation has a major influence on the health and safety related behaviour of workers.

A positive safety climate improves production, reduces compensation and insurance costs. Positive safety climates can also enhance employee safety knowledge and their motivation to behave safely. Additionally, positive factors also improve employee perception of more support available from management and further reduce the number of incidents by employees and work groups through increased uptake of safety related policies and programs.

If you are seeking assistance in measuring your safety climate, the Gallagher Safety Climate Survey provides powerful insights into the safety environment of a workplace. More specifically, our safety climate survey captures workers perceptions and beliefs that may be influenced by the attitudes, values and opinions of other workers in your organisation. Capturing the overall status of safety climate is a critical indicator for future safety performance and direction.

 

Further to the above, Gallagher Workplace Risk can partner with your business to:

  • Co-Design Behavioural Safety Programs (Face-to Face and e-Learning)
  • Facilitate ‘Leading Safety’ Senior Management workshops
  • Employee Safety Culture Workshops (Education + scenario-based, aligned with your safety program)
  • Build Leadership Safety Performance Indicators (into your Safety Management System and leadership training programs)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is safety culture versus safety climate, and how are they different?

Safety culture comprises the beliefs, attitudes, norms and work practices of management and employees. Safety culture refers to the collective of management’s attitude and actions about safety and in particular, the attitudes and beliefs of individuals in the workplace. Leaders create and maintain the organisational culture and if over time, multiple leaders demonstrate safety leadership, and this happens at all levels of the organisation, a positive safety culture is created.

 

Safety climate is a temporal (time related) sensitive measure of safety culture i.e.. At a particular time, at particular place and is subject to sudden changes. It is seen at a more localised level and provides a more tangible focus for a targeted Workforce Survey. Over time, the perception of overall workplace safety should change through higher level interventions (objectives, goals, leadership training, consultation mechanisms) and feed down into worker beliefs, attitudes, norms and work practices. These changes, if successful should elicit improved safety key performance indicators more broadly and overall improved workforce engagement.

Negative individual or group employee perceptions and opinions about safety, if left unidentified or unaddressed can have negative effects on the overall safety culture.

The Gallagher Safety Climate Survey uses anonymous feedback from employees to inform a critical risk analysis of safety related concerns across the organisation. This in turn helps inform the organisation’s safety strategy and future initiatives.

My organisation is small or medium in size, is a safety climate survey still relevant?

Gaining an understanding of the safety-related perceptions and beliefs within your organisation can assist you in tailoring your safety approach to meet your objectives and reduce the risk of ineffective initiatives being undertaken.

A positive safety climate improves production, increases the effectiveness of safety initiatives and can reduce workers compensation and insurance costs. These factors are of benefit to all business sizes.

The Gallagher Safety Climate Survey is able to be tailored and scaled to suit all organisations and industries whilst insuring you are provided with valuable and achievable insights and recommendations.