Safety Forward, Marisa Firkins - Health & SafetyDuring the last 10 years of being involved in health & safety, I have worked with managers across many different business functions to help them make improvements in their workplace. Recent weeks have seen me spend time with some really productive and successful companies who strive to retain and develop their workforce. I have reflected on what has made some workplaces a great place to be and others that have struggled to keep employees motivated. There are the 4 key health and safety leadership qualities that I believe make a content work force.

1. Encouraging your workforce and saying “well done”

Everyone likes to know they are doing a good job. People feel inspired when they hear words of encouragement. A good manager gives individual and specific feedback on productivity and safety improvements. Your staff are your biggest asset. When they do well make sure they know about it.

2. Do what you say you will do.

Lead by example and make sure your actions will inspire others to follow. Some managers talk about making health, safety and welfare improvements and never follow it up. If you don’t deliver on your promises, no one else will.

3. Involve others in making decisions

People will never feel motivated by being dictated to. Those who are constantly micromanaged don’t feel in control of their own choices and actions. Your staff know the job better than anyone. They know what works and what doesn’t. Staff are more motivated when they are given the freedom to use their own knowledge and expertise to get the job done properly. Those workplaces with good safety records are those that have managers who fully engage with their staff and give them autonomy in their role.

4. Listen to your workforce

Listening to your staff shows you are interested in them. Taking time to hear their concerns makes them feel valued and respected. Those managers who listen to safety concerns or suggestions create an opportunity to understand their workforce. When staff believe they are contributing to the overall health and safety decisions, they are more likely to feel valued.

If you would like more information about how Safety Forward can help managers to engage with the workforce contact us here