I recently saw funny motivational speakers, Billy Robbins speak at a Safety Conference. His safety motivational speech was effective and well designed to compel the audience to make safety a priority.
The keynote speaker asked the audience, How many people here think an Accident Free Workplace is possible? Only about 10% raise their hand. Why? The resounding answer was because we are people and people make mistakes.
In the workplace, it is that one critical moment where that mistake can cost you your life. The safety motivational speaker asked an audience member to come up and he put socks on both hands to prove that accidents change people's lives.
Without the use of his hands, this audience members life drastically changed, his freedom was taken away. That's what accidents do. They impact quality of life. Not just his life, his family, his spouse, his workplace.
Robbins drove the point home suggesting that kids think their parents can fix anything. (If you can't you can go buy another one). What if you couldn't help your kids anymore? They would have to go ask the neighbor to get the lawn mower fixed or to change a light bulb.
The trouble is people hate change. If an accident happens that affects your mobility, that change is forced on you in a very distinct way. Many of the personal freedoms you once had, are gone.
If you want an accident free workplace, you have to be motivated. It is a big commitment. It has to be controlled, you can't be up one day and down the next. You can't be committed one day and not the next.
The funny motivational speaker cruised the audience and suggested that people who have been doing their job 20 years or longer are going to be the first to have an accident. The longer we are on the job, the easier it is to become complacent and to take safety for granted.
Seasoned professionals often take shortcuts because they know how to. It's quicker, it's faster and you think, if I can just get through this quickly, I can do get it done.
I was a motivational speaker for a safety conference where the group decided that the most important thing safety managers can do is provide regular safety talks.
These safety talks are designed to remind and inspire employees to be safe on the job.
Good motivational safety talks will be short and frequent. A safety talk will be from 5 to 15 minutes and should be considered at least once a week.
Like any good motivational speech, a safety talk should have an Opening, Body and Close:
Opening. Say what your going to say.
To start a safety talk, consider the audience. Why is this information important? What makes it new and relevant for them? Give the audience at least one compelling reason that they should pay attention -and remember that the average attention span is 9 seconds or less. Give a basic outline of what you are saying and what your speech objective is.
Body. Unravel the content.
As a guideline, here are some things to consider in your weekly safety motivational speeches:
Talk about any new safety initiatives, considerations, near misses, errors, etc.
Reinforce your corporate commitment to safety and regulatory safety procedures.
Identify unsafe conditions or near errors and misses. This section should bring out some analogies and stories to engage the group. The more on the job examples, the more interesting and relevant your safety speeches will be.
Remind people of resources available to them when they have safety concerns.
Include a discussion or safety Q & A before you wrap up your safety motivational speeches. It is always better to close a safety talk in a memorable way, not with tentative question and answer interaction. Do this before your close your talk.
Close. Include a Call to Action
A compelling close will specifically identify what you want people to do differently as a result of your motivational safety talk.
Some calls to action may be:
-Identify safety hazards in your immediate workplace
-Increase awareness of safety within your work division
-Promote safe work safe procedures to others
A safety attitude isn't just reserved for the workplace. It's much easier to embrace safety as a lifestyle where it is priority no matter what environment your in.