Ready for your annual workplace safety plan? 

How on earth have we already entered the New Year? That is what many of us think as we realize it’s time to review this past year’s performance and start to plan for an even better year ahead. 

But what does it take to get the wheels in motion to generate a great workplace safety plan? If we break down the steps, we can then look at the calendar and (gulp!) get this wagon in motion! 

Consider a 4 to 6 week timeframe to a) gather your stats, b) set a few key meetings, and c) draft the new plan for review. On the back end, you’ll probably need some back-and-forth time for those reviews and approvals, right? So let’s get the wheels in motion…! 

5 Steps to a Great Safety Plan:

Safety leaders know that every good annual plan involves 5 key components:  

  1. Strategic planning session – whether across one session or a series of meetings, the Safety Planning Committee must take time to review past performance and realign its vision with the corporate mission for the coming year. 
  2. SWOT analysis – this involves taking a good, hard look at the organization’s current stats to understand its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in a way that helps drive the ideas for the next plan. 
  3. Goal-setting – with the SWOT in mind, you can now determine the best objectives for addressing any critical issues, plus set targets and protocols for increased safety performance. 
  4. Prepare for execution – this step is often the hardest as it involves a highly detail-oriented approach to creating metrics around how you will implement new initiatives, by when, and more importantly, how. Think “S.M.A.R.T” (make every goal specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound). By putting things in writing, you help set the stage for accountability, making it easier to track and report against your key performance indicators (KPIs). 
  5. Communicate – let everyone know, from top-down, bottom-up and inside-out that you have a strong and robust safety plan. Let them know how you will be implementing, tracking, and reporting. Include any references to how you will test, what is expected, and any consequences for actions that are outside of plan. Ensure all team leads are in sync with the roll out and prepared in the same manner for full communication of the new plan. 

Once approved, your safety plan guides all future actions. Any stumbling blocks in getting agreement to the plan must be addressed upfront and with internal respect for opinions or concerns. This way, you ensure that everyone in a leadership position is onside with the plan. Without this, the plan will fail. With agreement, the plan will be clear and swiftly adopted!

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