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Dysfunctional Practices

That Kill Your Safety Culture (and What to Do About Them)
Narrated by: David Stifel
Length: 6 hrs and 11 mins
Categories: Business, Management
4.5 out of 5 stars (51 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A man finds himself on the top step of a stepladder; a woman removes the guard to her machine; a worker is not wearing her safety glasses in the plant; a roustabout uses the wrong-sized clamp instead of retrieving the right tool from the supply truck; a supervisor teaches a new worker to take shortcuts; a mechanic climbs on top of an active machine to find the oil leak.

Why do these folks do these things? Is it because they are stupid? One tendency is to blame workers for safety errors and label their personal failings as the cause of the error. Labeling does not solve problems that cause error and, frankly, it may all be an illusion of human perception leading us to false conclusions. Our human tendencies result in interactions that hurt the safety of our workers and the effectiveness of the systems we put in place to protect them.

These tendencies build dysfunctional management practices that create fear associated with your safety programs. I want to teach you a better way to analyze the behaviors of your employees to understand why they were put in a position to take the risk in the first place. Your system may be perfectly designed to promote risks and create safety traps. By analyzing the context of behavior we can discover ways to change your system to optimize safe behavior and reduce injury. This book presents new ideas and methods using stories we can all relate to.

Human behavior is at the crux of your safety program. Physics and chemistry create hazards ready to be released when things go wrong. Human behavior happens right before that release. Therefore, we look at the behavior associated with the resulting injury and blame the person as the root cause. We label the person “stupid” and feel we have solved the problem. We haven’t. Instead, a dysfunctional practice creeps into our safety management system blinding us from finding the true root causes of at-risk behavior. If our goal is to create a safety culture in which workers are engaged with situational awareness, peer coaching, and reporting, we will fail. Our offensive labeling will create avoidance of the very engagement we desperately need from our workers.

We can’t fix people, let’s not be that pompous. But we can change behavior...we know how; there is a science behind it. Behavior is not a static variable of study. Behavior is a dynamic variable, reacting with each passing moment along predictable paths, like water in a river, but always ready and able to jump its banks and forge new paths.

We will discover that behavior is neutral, not good or bad, right or wrong. We will learn that for every safe behavior you want from your workers, there are a plethora of competing alternative behaviors that can put them at risk. This book is for managers who seek to shape their safety culture to drive out fear and engage their workforce as they drive out risk.

©2018 Timothy Ludwig (P)2018 Timothy Ludwig

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Amazing Audio

love this audio, the message that Tim is getting out is a game changer for a safety culture.

A safety culture is people talking to each other and how that talk affect safety behaviors.

This audio gives you real life examples on how to get to the root cause of an injury instead of labeling the person and not finding the root cause.

if you are in a leadership, management or safety roller this audio is a must.

This audio will teach you how to be open minded and learn how to find the root cause instead of labeling, labeling is easy.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great book!

Some very interesting concepts. It gave me a different perspective on employee behavior in correlation to management thought process.

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Excellent Resource

This is an excellent resource for any safety professional. I was so pleased with this book and it's guidance that I bought a hard copy to share with my plant staff. This is the concept of caring put into words and actions that will help you and your team reach your safety goals.

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Great for Safety Professionals

This book is full of ideas and concepts to look at safety in a new light. With over twenty years of safety under my belt, I thought I understood it all. I realized there are things I do that this book showed me are not the greatest way to look at. I could look at the greater picture.

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The best professional book I have read yet

I will recommend this to all my colleagues,.One of the best insights on occupational safety I have come across so far.

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Profile Image for Iain
  • Iain
  • 12-23-18

Highly recommended

I would recommend this book to anyone involved in health and safety. It is well written, engaging and contains extremely practical advice. It clearly explains how blaming human error for incidents and labelling people as stupid or lazy is counterproductive and ineffective. The author outlines a much more productive approach and the level of empathy he shows for both managers and workers is very refreshing. I have listened to over 100 books on audible and never felt the need to write a review until now but this book has changed how I view behaviour in the workplaces I inspect and I am sure it will inform my practice for a long time to come. I will definitely be recommending it to my colleagues.

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  • JOHN CRAIG
  • 08-07-19

Excellent

A number of points about were people fail building safety cultures and what to do about them.