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6 Tips on Creating Safety Committees at Your Location

Are you are considering creating a safety committee at your location or has your safety committee hit a wall from an enthusiasm standpoint?

You might want to look at the following tips below to begin or rejuvenate your program.

Put progression before perfection at the start. When creating a safety committee, begin the process with immediate and long-term goals, but be careful about aiming too high initially.

Is there a measurement that you’re going to have? What can you do to push safety forward just a little bit? Not monumental, not huge, but one thing that you can hang your hat on December 31 and say, “This is what our committee accomplished in 2018.”

Embrace variety. Workplaces consist of employees with varied positions and backgrounds. Ensure your safety committee follows suit by including a mix of your organization’s labor force and management. Committees should include current or previous safety champions as well. 

Develop a basic curriculum. Be prepared to provide training and materials to boost committee members’ knowledge and recognition of workplace safety and health hazards, as well as ways to avoid and prevent them.

Plan meetings ahead of time. Develop meeting agendas a few days in advance and distribute them so committee members can prepare. Part of the agenda should include setting a time limit for the entire meeting, as well as for each agenda item. Monitor how meetings adhere to these limits.

Maintain a reasonable rotation among committee members. Ideally, the committee will be made up of volunteers rather than appointed or selected members. That dynamic increases the probability of consistent member investment and energy.

Consider the size of your organization and the committee when deciding the best rotation schematic. Stress the importance of a quantity of perspectives.

Don’t be boring. Meetings in general can be boring so do what you can to vary them. Make it an agenda item. Talk about what we can do to make these meetings more energetic and effective. Suggestions include opening meetings with personal reflections or exercises before the traditional reading of minutes; using occasional guest speakers; and scheduling some meetings offsite. Professional decorum still applies, of course.

For more information, please contact ISRI Safety Analyst/Coordinator Elly Torabian.

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