6 Important Safety Tips for Small Businesses

 

Typically, a small business wouldn’t be staffed with a full-time safety manager or officer. Yet it does not automatically follow that the business would have issues with safety. A safe environment – and a matching safety culture – can be created and maintained at any small business. Read on for some important safety tips for small businesses.

Clearly Publish All Rules

The only way to hold your employees accountable for compliance with safety rules is to ensure that everyone is aware of the rules. Post your safety rules at various places throughout your location. Review them as part of new employee orientation programs, and with the rest of the organization at least annually.  Remember to keep safety rules updated as changes or additions are made, and to actively ensure the workplace is aware of the changes.

Encourage safety awareness

Every employee is responsible for their own safety, and you also want to establish a culture where they feel just as responsible for the safety of others.   You can look for blog posts or other articles about safety and circulate them by posting or email. It doesn’t take much time to do this, and the results can be impressive. Most importantly, make sure that there is visible management support for safety.

Drill for emergencies

 

Hopefully there is never an actual need to deal with a workplace emergency, but it is always wise to be prepared for one. Prepare a safety drill once or twice a year to make sure everyone understands their role and responsibility in an emergency. Make sure accounting for all employees in the event of an emergency is part of your safety protocol.

 

Empower employees to report safety concerns

Employees should never feel that reporting a potential safety issue could have negative consequences (termination, lack of upward movement, etc.). Some organizations even give incentives to employees to report potential safety concerns.  However, it is also important to act on these concerns, or else the well runs dry. Even if no action is taken, it is critical to let the employee know that they were heard and that their recommendation is being considered.

Keep safety at the forefront

The importance of safety needs to be consistently demonstrated by management.  This can be accomplished through monthly safety meetings, or even daily tool box meetings to review a safety tip or practice. Also these tips do not need to be only work related; they can address safe driving, safety in the home, and so on.  In many organizations, a safety topic is introduced at the start of each meeting.

Improve housekeeping

A very high percentage of safety accidents are the results of slips, trips and falls.  Many of these incidents can point back to insufficient housekeeping as a root cause. Make sure your workplace is kept clean and organized. Aisles should be clear, cabinet drawers closed, tools and equipment put away, etc. Make sure electrical cords and phone chargers do not become tripping hazards. Organize a small committee to conduct monthly walk-around housekeeping audits. Publicize and act on their findings.

Small Business, Safe & Strong

A strong safety culture can be built and maintained, even in a small business. It does not require a large, complex program to do this. The key elements are management commitment and employee involvement. Build off those elements to keep your workplace safe.

To find out more about how your business can thrive in a safe and sound environment, contact us today.