During a week long trek through the jungles and mountains of Peru, we hiked through a small remote community that seldom sees outside world visitors. A small, muddy boy met our troop as we entered the village and prompted our guide, Dalmiro, to exclaim, “Mud is good!” This happy child was oblivious to his mud splattered body because he was having fun with the life and circumstances that were available to him. Dalmiro then pointed to the thatched roof of one of the small nearby huts and asked us to notice the single beautiful orchid that was bathed in sunlight as it grew out of the thatch.
As safety pros, we often get to dig in the mud of a safety culture that just isn’t right. There are corrections to be made, but the local culture in which we work is not open to a complete makeover that might help us to achieve what we believe our western safety leadership would desire.
How is your attitude? Can you be happy nurturing an orchid of success you are able to grow, even if there is some mud of reality splattered about?