Why workers want to stay safe: their reasons may surprise you.

I found myself looking at my hands in a whole new light after returning from a DiVal Safety Tradeshow. That is where I saw Dale Lesinski give a presentation on being ‘safe 4 the right reasons.’ The goal is to visualize the four people in your life who absolutely count on you being safe. And the four fingers on your hand serve as a visualization tool you always have at the ready.

What a great concept. I was hooked. I did the exercise. I picked my four. But then I wondered if this program could be taken a step further?

I am responsible for my own safety. True, to a certain point. But I also rely on my coworkers to make safe decisions around me. Do they know my four reasons and why they’re so important? Can they visualize what I keep so close to me?

I have a suggestion for any employer who has a workplace digital signage program: help employees share their reasons. Visual communication makes things real. It’s incredibly powerful to have pictures of employees with their safety reason right next to them. And it’s not just real; it’s memorable. Keep in mind that we forget up to 75% of what we’re told, but with visual reinforcement, we retain 85%. There are few more important things I want to retain than the reasons why I’m being safe around my coworkers.

Your digital signage messaging can go beyond a simple list of names. Instead, to make it even more memorable, the reasons could look more like this:

“I’m safe because I’m cooking dinner tonight for my kids.”

“I’m safe because Thor, my German Shepherd, loves to run with me.”

These are visuals I can certainly take away with me. They personalize my coworker. I want him or her to get that dinner ready. And I can see Thor getting antsy for his evening run. Of course, with the right digital signage, you could easily post a picture of Thor, which offers another set of benefits I’ll describe in a future post.

Like all safety programs, you need to stick with it. Employees come and go. Our ‘reasons’ for being safe change.  It’s important to periodically refresh the ‘reasons’ that are being displayed. Fortunately, effective workplace digital signage software makes it easy to post these kinds of updates.

What other safety programs and training could be enhanced when you further engage employees and share safety messages through workplace digital signage? After all, your organization made the investment in the program; your employees made an investment with their time. Make it pay more safety dividends with your workplace digital signage.

Sean Donnelly
December 3, 2015

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