Monday, January 6, 2014

Conclusions – Personal Risk Assessment

I have enjoyed this series on what seems to be, in my opinion, an important fourth pillar of safety performance:

1. Regulations that set the basics in safely reacting to the conditions we face in the work place
2. Accountabilities for personnel at all levels and throughout the organization for engaging in what they can do to prevent injuries
3. Error proofing the safety processes that make a difference by engaging our people in a continuous improvement team safety culture
4. Personal Risk Assessment that leads to a safety culture for all personnel who as a result just doesn’t take risks

The work Dave Fennell of Exxon Imperial Oil Canada has done on this topic has definitely forced me to consider a whole different outlook on personal and corporate safety reality. We started with three common threads to analyzing personal risk which all of us must consider:

1. Recognizing the risk
2. Understanding why it is a hazard
3. Identifying your personal risk tolerance when we face the reality of what we are about to do

In turn, this lead to a series of ten common personal risks and what we and our work group personnel should do when faced with these deadly 10 safety risk realities:

1. Overestimating our capabilities
2. Familiarity with the task
3. Seriousness of the potential outcomes
4. Voluntary actions
5. Personal experience
6. Cost of non-compliance
7. Confidence in the equipment
8. Confidence in protection
9. Potential profit and gain
10. Role models accepting risk

Each of these personal risk topics had suggestions on how to reduce the risks we and our people experience on a daily basis. As an example, consider the “stop and think” process/card, which when used on a regular basis causes us to consider the risks, how serious they could be, what we can personally do about them and more. This is a practical tool set I now carry with me wherever I go. Part of the real power of this simple tool is delivered when you and your personnel from across the organization continue to reinforce its use by your people just as a part of being alive, like eating or breathing. The desire is to create a personal risk assessment culture which lives as “Just the way we do things around here on and off the job.”

If you are to deliver this kind of culture you and your people will have to:
• Study the above mentioned personal risks and their tool sets
• Customize them to your organization’s reality
• Train and continually reinforce personal risk assessment with appropriate action accountabilities as your organization’s safety culture reality

As with this series we have engaged in over the last few weeks there is much more to developing this kind of safety culture than can be delivered in a short blog article. If you would like to engage in greater depth please contact me. This is a great tool set I believe can make a huge difference in your safety performance on and off the job.

The Doc

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