Safety training. It’s a dreaded requirement for both employers and workers, but it’s essential for maintaining a safe work environment. Not to mention for meeting federal and state requirements as well. If your goal is to kill your team with boredom, go ahead with the standard “presentation” that involves encyclopedic-reading in a lecture-style setting. However, if you’re ready to switch things up and really keep your team members engaged, there are ways to make safety training more than just a boring seminar. Here, we’ll take a look at some tips employers can use to keep required training sessions fun, loose, and informative.
1. Don’t rush through it.
As a leader on the job site, you set the tone for everyone else. If you want your team to take safety training seriously, you have to demonstrate this yourself. Too many employers try to squeeze these seminars into 30-minute lunch breaks or early morning briefings. Sure, you might be able to save a few extra bucks on the payroll but you’re not showing your team that you take this stuff seriously. And if you don’t, why should they? Instead of glossing over it, dedicate the proper amount of time and attention to the training. Even if it ends up costing you an hour of productivity in the short-term, it’ll be worth it in the long-run.
2. Make a game out of it.
Let’s face it. The information you’re required to cover for safety training is dry. But that doesn’t take away from its importance in creating a safe and healthy work environment. A great way to spice-up this information and keep everyone engaged is to set up a game. It might sound cheesy, but it beats standing in front of your team reading straight from a booklet while everyone struggles to stay awake.
For example, you could make a series of questions regarding safety protocol, split your team into two groups, and play a trivia-style game. Or, you could have a scavenger hunt where pairs of team members snap photos of safety equipment throughout the job site to make sure everyone knows where things are located. Be creative, make it fun, and make sure to include small prizes for the winners.
3. Bring in experts to speak.
It’s easy to poke fun at safety training when it’s a normal day on the job. But when push comes to shove, the information covered in these briefings can save lives. A great way to drive home the importance of these procedures is to bring in safety experts to speak on the subject such as police officers, firefighters, ambulance drivers, and even professors. Each professional would have a unique perspective from which they could speak regarding safety in the workplace. Some might even be able to fabricate potential emergency situations the team might face along with some demonstrations on how to deal with each scenario. Hearing from experts can add some weight to the safety training information that might otherwise remain vague.
4. Make it collaborative.
Although safety training information is often dry in-and-of-itself, it’s not the only cause of boredom in these meetings. Typically, employers will default to a lecture-style setting where they’re the only person talking the entire time which further contributes to an atmosphere of monotony. To avoid this issue, construction employers can make the safety training more collaborative in nature.
When all employees are engaged, they’re less likely to miss out on critical information. You could split up your team into different groups and assign each with a particular subject that you want to cover such as eye protection, fire safety, or other emergency situations. Each group would then have to make a presentation for the rest of the team, and the most impressive could win a small prize.
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