Your business’s fate is inextricably linked to your brand. And your brand is inextricably linked to the actions of yourself and your employees. It’s more than just your cool logo and the color scheme of your website. Everything you post on Twitter is your brand.
Every interaction your employees have with customers is your brand. Every product you sell and every service you render is your brand. As such, you need to take steps to prevent anything from damaging the integrity of that brand.
Like an accident caused by something, you or a member of your team does on or off-site. Accidents can be costly to your business in a number of ways. They can involve damage to equipment that needs to be repaired or replaced.
They can involve personal injuries that make you legally vulnerable. But harder to quantify (but perhaps even more important) is the damage that they can do to your brand and your reputation.
With this in mind, it beehives you to familiarize yourself with the 4 “A”s of accident prevention.
Awareness in this case means the education, training and development of your employees.
Not just training in the safe and proper use of equipment, but training in safe operational procedures, the ability to identify hazards in and outside the workplace, and what to do if they see a colleague acting in an unsafe way that could lead to accidents.
This training should not just be something that occurs at the point of onboarding. It needs to be a continuous part of their professional development.
Assets / Equipment
The great thing about operating in the digital age is that there are all kinds of cool apps and tools to assist employees in remaining vigilant in preventing accidents in and out of the workplace.
If you have a fleet, upgrading your GPS tracking system to a solution with driver and dashboard cameras, for instance, could reduce the cost of a truck accident. Regardless of whether or not a member of your team is at fault.
You may assume that alertness and awareness are the same things. However, awareness pertains more to training and understanding of proper procedures, while alertness pertains to hazard perception and maintaining constant vigilance.
And training is only half the battle when it comes to the latter. Employees need to be trained to spot hazards, but they also need to be supported in a way that allows them to remain alert.
For instance, implementing a policy that ensures employees take breaks to remain rested can help them to be more alert when using heavy machinery or at the wheel.
Ultimately, you need to create a culture of personal accountability from the top (i.e. you) down. You need to ensure that each and every member of your team plays their part in keeping your operations safe, whether they’re under your roof or not.
And that means you need to know how to praise and support them when they do and know how to handle matters when they don’t.