A weak health and safety culture can be devastating to you, your employer, your coworkers, and even customers. Remember that your employer has put procedures in place for a reason, with everyone’s health and safety in mind. If you fail to follow a specific process and neglect your responsibilities, you’re putting everyone at risk. Here are some of the dangers of not following procedures and what you can do about it.
Greater Risk of Injury
To put your health and safety at risk is one thing, but to put others at risk is totally responsible and even cruel. Whether it’s your coworkers or customers, no one wants to be responsible for hurting someone else. People depend on you to make decisions that affect them. If they feel like you’re putting them at risk, they won’t trust you and you’ll damage your relationships with your coworkers.
If you’re consistently neglectful or irresponsible at work, you’ll damage your reputation, and people won’t want to work the same shift as you, worried that you’ll get hurt or you’ll hurt someone else. Eventually, if your manager catches wind of your irresponsible habits, you might get reprimanded or even lose your job. And the accident that results from your actions (or inactions) and your employer develops a poor health and safety record, their reputation will be damaged, and their business will suffer.
Your company has a legal responsibility to make your workplace a safe environment for your employees. If you fail to do your part, your company will face fines, legal costs, and someone might even face jail time. Your employer isn’t going to keep you employed if you’re putting them at risk for all that.
Accidents and injury mean that work can’t happen as it takes time to clean up the mess, treat injuries, and repair or replace any damaged equipment. During that time, your employer will suffer a loss in production even though it still has to pay wages and other overhead costs. Plus, workers who are distracted by concerns for their own safety won’t be able to concentrate on their tasks and work as efficiently.
When your coworkers don’t feel safe at work, they won’t want to be there. First, they’ll skip work when they can, and eventually, they’ll leave the company and look for employment elsewhere. Your decisions have a significant impact on everyone.
What You Should Do
First, do your part. Wear personal protective equipment as directed and encourage your coworkers to do the same. Follow the procedures and the training you received when you were first hired. When new safety protocol is introduced, take the time to learn and practice it. If you have a concern that a coworker isn’t working safely, report that to a coworker. And if you feel pressure to take shortcuts and skip specific procedures, talk to your supervisor about how you can still prioritize safety.