Preaching to the Choir
By Robert Dusanic, 17th Training Wing Safety Office
/ Published April 19, 2018
GOODFELLOW AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
Now as you know by now, I am not a man of the “cloth” so I am not trying to cross over into the Chaplain Borger’s swim lane. However the term, “preaching to the choir” is relevant when it comes to discussing and understanding the many different facets of the safety process within your groups, squadrons and agencies. As you all know, in World Class Safety Organizations, supervisors and leaders must take the lead away from the safety office and spread that safety process understanding throughout their areas of responsibility. This provides that ever important safety “credibility” that makes leaders so effective. The followers can then support that “cred” by actively participating in the safety process which helps them understand their ownership. However most possibly feel they’re preaching to the choir when they’re discussing the safety process to people that probably already understand its importance within the Air Force Culture. But stay resilient in your quest because there might be some non-believers out there that need to see the light. All can preach the safety process message on a few key important points:
- Managers, supervisors and workers should all share the responsibility for the presentation of safety training. Make it varied and interesting. People think injuries “won’t happen to me,” and to help change this mindset get people who have been injured on the job to share their story and talk about what happened. This can be really effective because it provides an emotional response and the real life result of not taking the safety process seriously. Go tell it on the mountain!
- Report safety hazards and issues promptly in the workplace to your supervisor. This allows them to correct those hazards and issues rapidly lowering the risk of a mishap. Additionally, all personnel should report illnesses, injuries and property damage that occur so that managers, leaders and workers can find ways to mitigate the risk of those things happening again and again. This proactive reporting and response effectively strengthens the safety culture and keeps everyone whole. Can I have a hallelujah!
- All World Class Safety Organizations have one common denominator; ownership. Each and every manager, supervisor and worker takes ownership of the safety process. It’s an understood requirement of employment and is integral to an effective workplace safety culture. When asked, “Who owns the safety process?” the answer shouldn’t be the Safety Office. Each and every person that leads, works and trains at Goodfellow Air Force Base should answer “I do.” Make ‘em see the light!
Sermonize these points to help your teams understand the safety process and culture. Chaplain Borger, I didn’t cross your swim lane did I? Let me know, if so I’ll repent. Preach it to the choir!
17 TRW Wing Safety – “Stay safe my friends”