August 11 2019
By: Terry L. Mathis
Safety is a complicated matter, right? The problem is, the more complicated you make it seem, the less understanding and compliance you get. So, how do you keep safety simple and understandable? You break down rules and procedures into simple, generic precautionary behaviors. One client has a manual for ergonomics over 200 pages long. It details over 45 procedures, none of which the average worker can remember or recite. If you break down the procedures into generic behaviors, it all has to do with extension, alignment, pace and load. I rearranged these to make an acronym, LEAP, and systematically showed workers how each procedure was simply a combination of some or all these issues.
Once worker perceptions changed to reflect their new belief that ergonomics were not that complicated, compliance with the rules and procedures skyrocketed, and ergonomic injuries almost disappeared.
Wherever possible, keep safety simple!
Terry Mathis, Founder and retired CEO of ProAct Safety, has served as a consultant and advisor for top organizations the world over. A respected strategist and thought leader, Terry has authored five books, numerous articles, videos and blogs, and is known for his dynamic and engaging presentations. EHS Today has named him one of the '50 People Who Most Influenced EHS' four consecutive times. Business leaders and safety professionals seek Terry's practical insight and unique ability to introduce new perspectives that lead to real change.