Safety talks, also called toolbox talks, are speeches and discussions designed for businesses and companies. The purpose of a safety talk is to teach your employees basic safety skills and ideas on what to watch out for in the workplace. Custom design the safety talk topics to fit the needs of your employees, regardless of whether you work in a factory or a traditional office building.
Safety talks on ergonomics cover basic issues relating to how employees do their jobs. Ergonomics itself is a study devoted to creating equipment that better suits the human body. Teach employees how to properly lift heavy items with their knees, rather than bending and possibly straining their back. In factories and construction fields, show employees the proper ways to pull and push items, using more than one part of their bodies. In an office setting, focus on ways employees can use ergonomically designed items to their advantage, including body-hugging chairs and ergonomically designed keyboards.
Stress on the Job
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, stressful job conditions may lead to a higher risk of illness or injury. The NIOSH also refers to a survey by Northwestern National Life that found 40 percent of workers find their jobs highly stressful. A possible safety talk topic focuses on stressful situations, how to avoid those situations and how to reduce stress. Discuss the importance of taking breaks with your employees, especially during times of high stress. Give your employees the top warning signs of stress and make sure they know to stop and take a few deep breaths during those situations. Teach your employees how to identify stress in their co-workers as well, to prevent any problems caused by co-workers taking out their stress on each other.
Stop and Think
Taking a few seconds to stop and think before doing something may spell the difference between a smart decision and a disaster. Take, for example, two forklift drivers that reach the same spot at the same time. If both immediately move forward, they may wreck and cause a huge accident. If the two drivers stop and think before making a decision, they're more likely to wait and let the other move first. Teach your employees the importance of thinking before making a decision.
Tired workers are more likely to make mistakes, cause accidents and make other disturbances in the workplace. During your safety talk, discuss the importance of getting enough sleep at night and combating fatigue throughout the day. Sometimes, the only thing an employee needs is a snack or cold water to help him feel more alive and energetic. Eating sugary snacks or drinking caffeine-laced drinks can cause a crash feeling or make the fatigue worse.
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