When it comes to feedback and recognition in the workplace, the numbers speak for themselves. A Gallup poll report from workhuman.com found that incorporating recognition and appreciation in the workplace increased both employee satisfaction and productivity. It’s even been shown that employees who receive regular feedback and recognition are five times less likely to leave the organization. These stats impact safety, too. High turnover has detrimental effects on workplace safety. Incorporating recognition and appreciation into your workplace safety program is part of a concept known as Behaviour-Based Safety (BBS).
What is Behaviour-Based Safety?
BBS is about reinforcing safe behaviours through feedback, recognition, and positive reinforcement. BBS aims to prevent human error by analyzing employees’ work actions and then determining how to complete them in a way that is safe and reduces the likelihood of injury to self or another.
The Benefits of Incorporating Recognition and Appreciation at Work
I bet you’re wondering how a behaviour-based safety program that focuses on recognition and appreciation can create a safer workplace.
- It’s a positive-first approach to safety: In safety, there is a lot of focus on what workers are doing wrong or what went wrong. BBS opposes that negative philosophy. When safe behaviours are observed, workers are offered positive feedback and reinforcement, which motivates them to repeat safe behaviours.
- It creates observable change: When you implement BBS, you’ll see the change because behaviours are observable. Employees tend to respond quickly to positive feedback.
- It’s a great way to provide feedback to help employees learn and develop: Developing your team is part of the job. BBS provides you with a great opportunity to do that positively. On a broader level, having frequent feedback conversations that include recognition can help you make connections and build trust, resulting in a stronger safety culture.
Providing Positive Feedback
To incorporate BBS into your workplace safety practice, start by making it a habit to observe behaviours, and then praise, recognize, appreciate, and celebrate safe actions. When you see safe behaviour, consider the following:
- Observable: Has the behaviour been seen or heard? By whom? (Hint: it’s best if you saw it directly, but there may be times you choose to accept a second-hand account)
- Reliable: Did everyone else see it the same way? Did anyone see it differently? Does the employee consistently behave this way?
- Control: Does the employee have control of the behaviour? For example, are they manually operating the machinery safely, or is it an automatic function of the machine that happens to be functioning safely?
- Using Positive Language: if you determine that the action was observable, reliable, and within the employee’s control, be sure to provide positive recognition about what they did and how they did it.
Recognition and Appreciation can Reduce Workplace Incidents
A study in safe behaviours conducted by workhuman.com shows that companies that incorporate recognition in their safety programs have five times fewer recordable injuries than those that don’t. That’s a huge savings in lost-time hours. Adding recognition and appreciation to your workplace safety program is an investment in your workforce’s health, wellbeing, and career.
Not Sure Where to Start? BEST Safety Training Can Help
Like the calendar? Add your email to our mailing list to get one FREE, straight to your inbox, every month. Each month features a new topic, all designed to keep your workplace safe, healthy, and compliant.
To ask questions about our training programs or to book a consultation to help you develop a customized working at heights safety program contact us online or call 226.777.7385. Visit us 24/7 on the web at bestsafetytraining.ca.