Effective protection from occupational hazards takes leadership and commitment from top management. Management leadership provides the motivating force and the resources for organizing and controlling activities within an organization. In an effective program, management regards worker safety and health as a fundamental value of the organization. Ideally, this means that concern for every aspect of the safety and health of all workers throughout the facility is demonstrated.
Does your safety and health system incorporate:
- Reasons for establishing a safety and health program (or the worksite policy),
- Where you want to end up (or the goal), and
- The path to your goal (objectives).
These are some of the actions recommended by OSHA to ensure that management leadership is in place.
Other recommended actions for management leadership include visible management involvement, assigning and communicating responsibility, authority and resources to responsible parties and holding those parties accountable. In addition, management should ensure that workers are encouraged to report hazards, symptoms, injuries and illnesses, and that there are no programs or policies which discourage this reporting.
Successful top managers use a variety of techniques that visibly involve them in the safety and health protection of their workers. Managers should look for methods that fit their style and workplace. Some methods include:
- Getting out where you can be seen, informally or through formal inspections.
- Being accessible.
- being an example, by knowing and following the rules employees are expected to follow.
- Being involved by participating on the workplace Safety and Health Committee.