So you wear a white hat, have a company truck and an office space in a trailer; you are officially a “boss.” No matter if you are a foreman for a 3 person crew or a project manager for a huge site, you still have big responsibilities. The biggest responsibility that falls on your shoulders is to ensure your workers go home safe every night. Yes, of course there are deadlines, budgets and paperwork; all of that means nothing if the people who work under you, are having incidents, injuries or even worse! So what can you do to keep these people safe? You can be a leader! How is that different from a boss and how does this affect safety? Well let’s get into that.
A boss knows the job and dictates what should be done, how it should be done and when it should be done, throwing a “do it safely” at the end of instructions. Which will probably get the job done… but will the end result be a good one? Will everyone involved leave unscathed?🤷 A leader will put in the time, communicate with and inspire workers to do their best and do it safely. I think you can break it down into those three categories… Time, communication and inspiration.
When I say “putting the time in” I don’t mean punch your time card for 10 hours a day and poof! I mean go to site and spend time with your crew. Get to know them and their safety concerns. Take time out of your office or truck and head to the front lines, get your hands dirty and show your crew you’re part of the team. Also spend some time educating yourself. You are in charge of how up-to-date you are with safety standards and innovations. Remember, you have other workers’ well-being laying right on your shoulders, so keep current.
Come back on Monday and we will finish up the last two keys to being a great leader.