One of the best things an employer can do to keep workers safe is to create a culture where safety is clearly important, where avoiding injury is valued and where workers know that this is the case.
Doing this means taking a lot of little steps. For instance, employers need to:
- Set safety goals and share them with the company
- Give all employees proper safety training
- Hand out the necessary types of PPE for the job
- Tell employees how to report injuries
- Stress that getting the job done quickly is not more important than getting the job done safely
Workers often put a lot of pressure on themselves. They want to be productive and show their value to the company. This can lead to rushing, which in turn leads to mistakes and injuries. Employers want productive employees, of course, but they should never be so focused on productivity that safety becomes a second-class goal. It needs to be first.
When workers know that that is where their employer stands — backed by supervisors and managers — then that takes the pressure off of them. They know that they can do what they need to do to stay safe on every job. This mentality and culture can go a long way toward reducing the number of accidents and injuries.
That said, injuries can still happen in any workplace. Nothing can fully guarantee that workers will not get hurt, often by things out of their control. When they do, they need to know what legal steps to take, especially if the injuries are serious and may impair their ability to return to work.