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Safety Meeting Fodder

Safety Meetings can be a distraction for many who face orchestrating them, as one is generally needed for every workday. At first they may seem all right, the typical run down of safety glasses, hard hat and gloves advisement. “Watch your hands” and “Wear your harness on the scaffolds.” But the meetings keep on coming…day in and day out…every shift. Ho-hum sets in pretty quickly and even those workers who, at first, were a little attentive are drifting off during the ‘lecture’.

 

A solution to ho-hum can be very elusive.  Safety incentives are generally hard to come by and usually weak when they are available. Even stickers lose their luster after being handed out a few times. I, just like you, have pondered this problem. I got myself motivated and took it to task. I have seen, scrutinized  and plagiarized ideas and even generated a few of my own that help keep the energy level up during a Safety Meeting.

Here are a few suggestions for your consideration:

***The 7-Minute Safety Trainer is written by Barbara Kelly and available through Business & Legal Reports, Old Saybrook, CN. This is a collection of 50+ concepts laid out in presentation form. Designed for a polished 7 minute session, they are also a great guide for a less formal presentation and some direct quotes on the pertinent subject matter. Not everything in the book may be comfortable with your particular needs but it has a great variety of genuine topics that may be paraphrased and molded for consumption.

 

***My own “Are You In JEOPARDY?!” is different and gets as lot of participation in meetings. A device taken from my favorite TV show, it generates attention from the workers I present it to.

“Are You In JEOPARDY” is very simple and fun. It requires ingenuity on your part but it’s doable, here’s how it works:

It is kind of a game show/pop quiz format put together by selecting 7 topics you want to touch on for that meeting. From mundane daily items to more sensitive or critical items, blended together – don’t single out just one topic for the presentation. First, number and list your topics. Then develop a simple question and its answer. Example… Q: What is required of you when you are on a scaffold or ladder and six feet above the working surface you are on? A: 100% tie-off.

Now, word it like they do on JEOPARDY! It will go like this: To begin, I announce that “we are going to play Are You In JEOPARDY?! today.” I also say “There will be seven answers because seven is a lucky number and we can use all the luck we can get." “The first answer is: 100% tie-off. Who knows the question?” Select a volunteer or pick one at random. They must answer it in question form…make them do it that way. (an answer might sound like this: “What is working while on a scaffold?”) Be prepared for a few sarcastic answers but the gist of the message is received by the crowd. It is good to have some little thing for a prize for each correct answerer (even a dog likes a pat on the head). It gets fun into the meeting and it works! At worst the dumb stares continue, like always.

 

***Another method for sales meeting is “The Top Seven Reasons” list. More plagiarism but it works well too. Pick your topic and then list reasons why, going from #7 down to #1. Keep on the same topic for the entire list this time.

 Many of the answers need to be absurd or so apparent they are dumb. But the last two or three need to hit home pretty good.

Example:          

“Today we have:

     ”The Top Seven Reasons Why A Hard Hat Is Your Best Friend”

                “There are 7 reasons because 7 is a lucky number and we can use all the luck we can get.”

And the reasons are:

                Reason #7 – Scaffold workers’ & smokeless tobacco.

                Reason #6 – Something to carry your goggles on.

                Reason #5 – Shade can be a good thing.

                Reason #4 is – Stickers.

                Reason #3 – The kind with the brim in front channels the rain very nicely down your collar.

                Reason #2 – A low-hanging section of electrical  conduit.

                And the #1 Reason why a Hard Hat is your best friend….a 1 ½ inch nut from 60 feet above.

it’s on Letterman five nights a week, his audience loves it too…

Those last two are daring and it takes a lot of nerve to start and then pull them off but they are fun and you get tremendous attention compared to the usual meeting. One more meeting format  I will touch on is new to me; I was introduced to it on my current job. I opposed it initially because it took me out of the meeting almost entirely (I like giving meetings) but it is simple,  works very nicely, is fresh every day and is always specifically pertinent to that day’s upcoming work.

 

***Safety gets the attention of the crowd and introduces the Supervisor or General Foreman. In their own order, the supervision tells that day’s work scope, what to expect, when and where what will happen. After all have taken their turn, safety accents the points for added or reminded caution for the jobs just described. Open discussion follows. Simple, easy, and tuned to exactly what they are about to do. I hate to admit it but it is very effective and requires no preparation on my part at all.

 

Okay, maybe these suggestions are fresh to you. Maybe they are too dumb. Maybe they appeal to you. They all work but maybe not with everyone. Blend them in over the course of your job and you WILL have a variety that catches attention and generates participation while espousing the information that needs to be absorbed by the crew.

 

Robin Ryherd
CSST, CSSS,OSHA 500

Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Email here

 

Want to learn more Safety Meeting Ideas and rack up continuing education credits in the process? Warriors 4 Safety offer complete on-line training programs:

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