Effective Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) needs to go beyond compliance and circulating a policy. To create a truly safe and healthy workplace, it needs to be ingrained in the culture of an organisation.
Organisational culture underpins the context in which people judge their behaviour and what is acceptable at work. It’s built by the people in an organisation at any one time, alongside values instilled by leadership and company policies, and informed by company and societal history and context. It’s living and breathing, but can be guided by leadership.
But how can you change culture and improve how your organisation and employees see workplace health and safety as a core value?
The WA Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety suggest that a safety and health culture can be broken down into three categories:
- Organisational – policies, procedures and systems that relate to safety and health;
- Psychological – individual perceptions, attitudes and values;
- Behavioural – health and safety behaviours.
The structure needs to be there in the form of policies to outline what is expected, and required of employees.
Engaging with teams and individual employees and facilitating two-way communication helps to understand the existing attitudes and values and how to work with them to move towards your goals.
Understanding the behaviours that exist that need modifying or modelling, ensures everyone in an organisation is supporting, championing and adhering to the importance of keeping everyone safe and healthy at work.
Safety and health culture within an organisation can often best be determined and defined by what people do when they think no one is watching.
Of course this can be hard to gauge! An outsider can help – if you are interested in a consultation, or just an initial chat, contact us today:
T: +61 8 9379 9999
If you are interested in training for yourself or your organisation, explore our WHS courses. We can also offer group booking discounts and bespoke courses. Simply get in touch to discuss your needs.