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Behavior-Based Safety

| Chaizong Lor

Behavioral-Based Safety (BSS) is a process that considers the observable behavioral patterns of employees and aligns that to a safety standard in order to encourage safety habits at all levels of production. In practice, the implementation of safety tools such as safety signs, training, regulations, and even company culture can be altered or emphasized as a result of BBS data. 

Workplace injury prevention is continuing, evolving process. To reduce work-related injuries, and keep reducing them, an employer needs to involve employees in daily activities. 

Unsafe Work Practice 2

Employee attitude

It is the attitude of the employees that is at the core of how successful a behavior-based safety program will be.  Some of the most important aspects include:

  • Developing clear safety-related goals and objectives at the corporate level;
  • Communicating these goals and objectives to all levels of the organization;
  • Enabling each area of the organization to attain its own specific safety goals;
  • Encouraging individual participant by all members of the organization;
  • Empowering employees to set and achieve their own safety goals; and
  • Fostering mutual respect and consideration at all levels of the organization.

Motivational influences

There are various motivational influences in the workplace that can have dramatic effects on an employee’s productivity and may ultimately determine whether an employee works in a safe manner or an unsafe manner.  Some examples of motivational influences that can take precedence over safety can include:

  • An individual’s level of self-worth;
  • A secure working environment;
  • A desire for achievement;
  • A desire for recognition; and
  • How employees feel about their jobs in general.

Behavior-based safety and employee motivation begins with effective communication.  In order to foster good communication, an employer should:

  • Provide employees with the information they need to do their jobs;
  • Let them know their work has value;
  • Provide regular feedback;
  • Listen to complaints;
  • Criticize behavior, not people;
  • Established easy-to-use channels of communication; and
  • Personally congratulate employees for a job well done.

There are no related OSHA regulations for behavior-based safety; however, topics that discuss employee motivation may provide related information.