Oftentimes, many of us like to discuss safety influence at the supervisory level where much can be accomplished to keep workers safe. But like you, I’ve seen what subtle actions can do when it comes to influence from the top – both good and bad.
We know that “leadership creates culture;” any leader will tell you that. But oddly enough, “knowing” in this case doesn’t reach very far. What is required is finding the connection between what I do as a leader and the kinds of cultural attributes I would like to change. Here is an example from my experience:
The American Industrial Hygiene Association® (AIHA) inducted Steven E. Lacey, PhD, CIH, CSP, at AIHce as the new President of AIHA's Board of Directors at the Annual Business Meeting on May 26, during the 2016 American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exposition (AIHce) in Inner Harbor Baltimore, Md.
We’ve never met a leader who didn’t want a better culture for their organization. Statements like, “we need to change the culture,” are heard every day in the life of a consultant. What is odd is that the leaders who make these statements usually think they are talking about other people, when in reality they are talking about themselves.
Tips for Getting Executive Buy-in on Your Safety Initiative
May 27, 2016
Numerous studies confirm that any sound workplace safety initiative should not be viewed as an expense, but rather an opportunity to save money and improve business performance. With the proper training, equipment and processes in place, a safety-first culture is a proven way to protect lives while boosting morale, increasing productivity and avoiding litigation.
In recent days, I’ve been thinking a great deal about humility. Oftentimes humility seems to become more prominently displayed when one is hurt, challenged, or broken in some way. On the other hand, I can’t help but think of the very best leaders I work with on a regular basis. Most are curious and open to learn. Where did that start? Where did it begin?
Organizational leaders are always in the process of seeking out and developing talented people who can take on responsibilities and attain objectives. The higher up you get the more important this becomes. If you could just find five people who could do what you can do, or what your top leader is doing, life would be great.
In late March I attended the Indiana Safety and Health Conference & Expo in Indianapolis. I also spent time with my former West Virginia University (WVU) teammate and longtime friend, Oliver Luck. He was Academic All-America at WVU. Oliver is also a former NFL quarterback and well-respected sports executive who is now second in charge with the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
The Health and Safety industry is evolving and with it is the skill set required to be successful. There will always be a need for technical underpinning gained through formal qualifications, but many successful leaders attribute their success to the ability to demonstrate a set of critical competencies that go beyond technical knowledge.
A gallery of photos from the sprawling Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, where ASSE’s annual professional development conference was held June 8-11. All photos courtesy of the American Society of Safety Engineers.