Make Safety Fun And Your Employees Will Thank You

Written by Daniel Aday, CompOne Administrators Safety & Loss Prevention Risk Manager
Picture this: You are walking into a safety training on a relevant topic, the instructor introduces themselves, briefly talks about the class, then goes right into a 100 slide PowerPoint that is statistic after statistic, with a brief break up of regulation and some semi-interesting photos… Yawn! That class is going to put you directly to sleep!

Safety in general has always a hard topic to teach. Historically, when someone gets notice of a safety meeting that they must attend, there is always a sense of hesitation, frustration or even annoyance. “Oh, man, another safety class… dang!” All of that must end! Safety is not meant to bore people to death. It is meant to prevent the audience from getting injured and the only way to provide training is to ensure the message gets received in full by them. Sure, there are scare tactics that will provide the audience’s attention, such as showing videos of real-life accidents, but humans are born to adapt to fear and are meant to overcome it. Scare tactics only work for so long. Making safety fun not only ensures that the message gets delivered, but also boosts moral and encourages a safe working culture.
Here are some ways you can make your training more fun and captivating so that your employees will be pleased to know that they have a required safety training they must attend.

It Starts With The Instructor
If you had to choose between going to see Queen perform live at a concert first row, or going to see some local guy sing his best impression of We Will Rock You at your local coffee shop, which would you choose? Well, unless you are best friends with the local guy or own the coffee shop, odds are your choice is going to go back in time and watch Queen.
Why is this? They both can sing the same song, right? It is all about performance! Queen has a reputation to have amazing concerts and sing with such power. Your training is simply a performance that is meant to entertain the audience. If they are not entertained, they will not pay close attention and therefore will not learn. So, leave all the insecurities, hesitation, and boredom at the door when you go to train, because you are about to give a presentation they won’t forget!

Minimize Wordy PowerPoints
Or, for that matter, get rid of them all together! If at all possible, take training to the point of operation. If you are doing Energy Isolation (Lockout-Tagout) training, set up ahead of time a mock-up situation of where the audience gets to participate (with guidance) how to lock-out equipment. This hands-on approach leaves people informed and confident with what they have learned. Same with PPE: you don’t need to include a PowerPoint classroom training on gloves, all you need is some samples of what PPE you provide and then provide real-world testing. If you cannot remove the PowerPoint, don’t flood the brains of the audience with slide after slide of OSHA Regulations. Include relevant videos, or split up the class into a classroom discussion and a demonstration.

There is no need to go on and on about how much OSHA citations are, how the company would be impacted if someone got hurt, or what the safety goals are for next quarter. What to do instead is to gear your training around how does your particular subject – or the lack of it – directly impact the audience. Show concern and interest for the well-being of the employees and they will return the appreciation with their safe and quality work.
Lastly, include relevant items with specific job duties that are performed by the those in your audience as much as possible. Adding up all of this equates to a training they won’t forget!
This entry was posted in 2020, MARCH 2020. Bookmark the permalink.