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Editor’s Note: ISHN presents to you this excerpt from a speech on leadership given by Admiral Hyman G. Rickover in 1982. It is more evidence to the fact that much about “leadership” is timeless. The speech has nothing to do with safety, but its principles apply to workplace safety leadership in the most precise way.
In last week's blog, I told a story of an employee directing traffic at a fast-food restaurant opening. Thinking about that incident made me think about the thoughts of the managers at the local store and even at the corporate office if he had been hit and injured while in the path of one of the hundreds of cars arriving at the restaurant.
The safety job has matured, and will continue to do so – that was one of the takeaways from last week’s National Safety Congress & Expo, sponsored by the National Safety Council.
One of the changes in the nature of workplace safety work happens to be the nature of conversations revolving around safety. Back in the day when safety was largely a policing job with a heavy emphasis on rules and discipline, conversations between the safety manager and an employee tended to be short and direct.
“You know, a lot of safety managers don’t like that saying, ‘Safety Pays.’ They think it’s cold and heartless, impersonal,” said the PPE vendor from the NSC’s Congress & expo show floor. “But let me tell you, when you get down to it, a lot of businesses look at safety now in terms of dollars and cents.
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