What is safety leadership?

  • Published
  • By Galen Williams
  • 66th Air Base Group director of safety
Every day we influence the people around us in a positive or negative way by what we say or don't say, do or don't do. Being around people who promote and practice safety creates a safer environment for everyone. People who are careless or don't feel they have time for safety create an unsafe environment in which to work.

New employees at Hanscom watch the older, more experienced employees and take their cues from what they do. No matter how much training new employees are given, if the more experienced workers around them are not practicing safe work habits, eventually the new employees will emulate them, putting themselves and possibly others in danger.

No matter what your position is, you can be a safety leader by quietly doing what's right and by recommending that others do the same. If someone asks your opinion about whether a safety precaution is necessary, be a proponent. You could be saving their life.

Make sure that you:

· Don't take shortcuts
· Use guards and safety devices
· Focus on what you are doing - don't get distracted
· Dress for safety success, especially during the winter months
· Report hazards when you see them and encourage everyone to do the same

Remember that not only your co-workers, but also supervisors and visitors will observe what you do. Sloppy habits reflect a sloppy operation and make a poor impression. Be a safety leader. You will stay safe, and you can help others stay safe, too.

By virtue of our Voluntary Protection Program Star Status for recognition of safety programs that go above and beyond compliance, Hanscom has proven that safety is part of its culture. Let's all do our part to sustain that recognition. Be a safety leader.