What the word VALUE mean? If we say that Safety is a Value, what does this mean? The dictionary defines VALUE as a principle, standard or quality considered worthwhile or desirable, a family value. The dictionary defines a priority as a precedence established by order of importance or urgency. Which should you chose?
If you use the VALUE definition, you are sending a message that safety is important and will not be compromised. As the business needs change, so will the needs and focus of safety. However, if safety is considered a value it will always be present. Another good question that should be considered is: why does a company need a Safety program? Is it because the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires it or do you just want to do the right thing? The basic purpose of any safety program is to help prevent injuries. I do not know the reference for this, but I have heard the following statement before and I think that it fits nicely here: Managers do things right, Leaders do the right thing.
If you were to look at the objective of regulatory requirements you will find that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's main objective as spelled out is: To assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women.
Even the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recognizes that physical compliance with safety requirements alone will not eliminate injuries. It is an impossible task for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to attempt to write safety regulations that will address every possible or potential hazard in the workplace. This is the reason that some requirements are written as performance-based. Therefore, management must interpret these performance-based standards and compliance initiatives and apply then appropriately in the workplace. This can be done by strictly following the letter of the law or making good management decisions that meet the requirements and provide a best management practice for the business.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration along with the Safety community have recognized that it takes a combined efforts of best management practice, physical safeguarding, training, maintenance, to achieve success in an organization. The ultimate goal of any safety efforts is to take safety programs and integrate them in a safety process where everyone is responsible and accountable for safety.
James Roughton is an experienced Safety Professional and mentor to other Safety professionals on the aspects of safety. He has the following certifications, MS, CSP, CRSP, CHMM, CET, CIT, and Certified 6 Sigma Black Belt. In addition, I am an independent thinker and innovator who have varied interests. He is a Safety Professional my trade, but has broken out of the mold of safety by reaching out to others outside of the profession and sharing his other interests of developing websites, social networking, and learning about what is FREE on the internet. If you would like to learn more about safety elements and others areas of interest, please visit my web sites.