Helping employees overcome their tolerance to safety rules paves the way for them to see their own win for buying-in to safety. On this week's episode, how tolerance to safety rules may be worse that complacency.
Tolerance should become a serious consideration for supervisors and safety people. We all know that there has been plenty of talk about the hazards of complacency in safety. And the whole complacency conversation is gaining attention. But when you look for the actual definition of complacency, what you read may surprise you. Here's what the Merriam-Webster dictionary had to say about complacency: Complacency is self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies. In other words, when people get comfortable with their performance, they may pay less attention to risks. And when people are satisfied with their performance, there is a risk of complacency.
Tolerance, on the other hand, is the willingness to endure rules and procedures no matter how annoying they may be or how much you may disagree with something. When safety becomes an annoyance that needs to be tolerated, you are moving away from building a strong safety culture.
Kevin Burns is a management consultant, safety speaker and author of "PeopleWork: The Human Touch in Workplace Safety." He is an expert in how to engage people in safety and believes that the best place to work is always the safest place to work. Kevin helps organizations integrate caring for and valuing employees through their safety programs. http://www.kevburns.com/peoplework