Rock Products

JAN 2013

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analysis of the summarized "data" can help us implement systemic change where warranted. For example, with their Behavior‐Based Safety process, my client referenced above quantified how often their workforce failed to use wheel chocks. When it was deter‐ mined that most didn't use their chocks because they be‐ lieved it to be inconvenient relative to the benefit gained, the site made "double long‐handled" wheel chocks and placed them in every piece of mobile equipment. problematic). Strategies used to increase the number of observations included designing department specific ob‐ servation cards and the creation of area specific Behav‐ ior‐Based Safety teams in year two. Effective goal‐setting and feedback interventions and behavior‐focused incen‐ tive/rewards were also strategically used. These newly designed wheel chocks made it easier for personnel to place and remove their wheel chocks. As a result, safety in this area dramatically improved. Prior to this process, they were "writing up" these failures with only a minimal positive impact on behavior and a host of negative, emotional fall‐out. Case in Point The data presented here provide a sample of the results produced when a facility focuses on behavior to prevent injuries. Figure 1 below shows the Total Medical Rate for a mining facility before and after implementation of Be‐ havior‐Based Safety. Note the upward trend followed by a significant drop in incidents, and then continuous im‐ provement after a relatively good year. This change was precisely what the facility had wanted the Behavior‐ Based Safety process to accomplish. That is, after chang‐ ing the cycle of "good followed by bad," Behavior‐Based Safety produced a second "good" year in a row. The facility spent a majority of their time during early phases of the Behavior‐Based Safety process increasing the number of observations made by employees. And they did this with great success. As seen in Figure 2 below, in‐ creases in observations were correlated with a decrease in the Total Medical Rate, their KPI for safety success. (Please note: Although significant, changes in injury rate can appear subtle because, relative to other measures, in‐ juries occur infrequently. In fact, this is why using only in‐ jury rate as a measure of your safety success can be Concluding Comments When you teach and empower your workforce to appro‐ priately apply the principles of behavioral science to manage risk, you will create ownership around safety, and identify and solve safety issues before the injuries occur. Indeed, the application of behavioral science to prevent injuries is not new, but using the principles cor‐ rectly requires more than a casual understanding of "why people do what they do;" because human beings are com‐ plex, machinery is complex, and rock products facilities are a complex mixture of union and non‐union employ‐ ees, management, supervision and contractors. Thus, to be successful over the longterm you must pave the road to zero injuries with the correct products. I'm sure that everyone reading this would advise their customers of the same thing regarding the rock products their company supplies. E Dr. Thomas E. (Ted) Boyce is a behavioral strategist and president and senior consultant with the Center for Behavioral Safety LLC. The Center is a Nevada- and CaliforniaBased Safety and Leadership consulting firm that turns managers into leaders and helps companies create an injury-free workplace. Learn more at or contact Dr. Boyce directly at ROCKproducts • JANUARY 2013 49

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