How do you promote particular safety issues in the workplace?
Most organizations use safety toolbox talks or safety meetings.
These talks instill safety caution and procedures among employees.
To help your clients get started with these talks within their organizations, here are 5 safety toolbox talk resources and a sample agenda.
Promote a Safe Workplace Culture
Safety culture in the workplace places high regard on safety values, beliefs, attitudes, and practices shared by employees and management.
The goal of a safe workplace culture is to maintain workers’ safety by having everyone practice safety.
In most workplaces, you hear the phrase, “how we do things around here to promote safety.”
This reduces the risks of workplace accidents and results in less downtime and fewer occupational health costs.
Host Safety Meetings for Your Employees
The best ways to promote workplace safety is to have a safety handbook, create a safety policy, and host safety meetings for your employees.
Safety meetings are a great step to facilitate a common workplace safety agenda by:
- Educating everyone in the workplace about the risks around them.
- Showing everyone how to conduct themselves safely.
- Focusing on risk, and preventive and proactive safety measures.
It is recommended to hold regular safety meetings, usually at least once every month.
But, safety meetings can also be spontaneous, especially when the workplace or the type of work has potential hazards.
In this case, safety meetings can be held a few minutes before work or during a scheduled event.
Also, employees should go over all the company’s safety policies and procedures at least once a year.
What Is A Safety Toolbox Talk?
Typically, a Safety Toolbox Talk is an informal group discussion that focuses on the company’s safety culture, a particular work or safety issue.
Most toolbox talks are conducted at the job site before a work shift or daily to promote work or department safety culture.
Other names of toolbox talks are toolbox meetings, safety briefings, or tailgate meetings.
Toolbox talk discussions are normally short briefings designed to:
- Brief/remind workers on safety precautions and procedures.
- Introduces workers to new equipment’s safety rules.
- Provide last-minute safety checks before commencing work.
- Exchange safety information and benefit from the knowledge of experienced workers.
- Encourage employees’ involvement in the organization’s overall safety program.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Safety Toolbox Talks
1. Hold Regular Meetings
The more you repeat the safety instructions in the routine or regular toolbox talk meetings, the more employees absorb them and prioritize safety.
2. Make The Toolbox Talk Enjoyable
Other than safety, toolbox meetings improve employee camaraderie and give other employees a chance to learn from senior, experienced ones.
Making toolbox talks informative and more enjoyable will both improve safety and promote employee cohesion.
3. Schedule Toolbox Talks At The Beginning Of The Work Shift And At The Job Site
Meetings should be done at the beginning of the shift when employees are still fresh and alert.
Holding the meeting at the job site will allow for practical examples, such as equipment safety procedures.
It will also allow employees to begin work immediately after the talk.
4. Focus On Positives
The topics should be explained in a positive approach and focus on the safety takeaways.
While addressing the issues, encourage a more positive atmosphere by highlighting what the employees are doing right.
5. Make Toolbox Talks Short
A toolbox talk should last approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Anything beyond 15 minutes may result in less employee engagement.
6. Encourage Workers’ Participation And Feedback
A toolbox talk is a discussion, and worker participation is essential.
Let workers discuss their safety concerns and how the safety guidelines fit into their schedules.
This is also a way of gathering feedback from workers to hear what they’re most concerned about in order to address those concerns.
5 Toolbox Talk Resources to Help You Get Started
1. Harvard Environmental Health and Safety
This toolbox talk is part of the Harvard Occupational Environmental Health & Safety for the personnel working, living, or studying in Harvard’s facilities and buildings.
It provides technical guidelines for toolbox talks in different areas and includes OSHA and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) safety requirements.
This is the official Toolbox Talks training from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
It provides safety guidelines for workers, foremen, and supervisors to supplement with their company or organization’s policies.
3. Safety Toolbox Topics
This site, Safety Toolbox Topics, intends to be an exchange repository for safety professionals.
It has a large collection of safety topics for different industries.
The site hopes that as you use the resources, you’ll also publish and share your toolbox talk creations for others to benefit.
4. Free Safety Talks to Print for Your Next Safety Meeting
Browse the 250+ free safety toolbox talk topics to share with your employees and crew on this site.
It has category links to help you segment the talks for each work schedule, which you can print and share with your crew.
5. OSHA.gov Listing of Topics
This is also OSHA’s official site and lists health and safety discussion topics and industries in alphabetical order.
Just go to the site, find your industry, click on it, and it will redirect you to the health and safety guidelines, regulations, standards, and more.
Sample Agenda for Safety Meeting
Safety meeting agendas may differ depending on the company and industry.
Here’s a sample you or your clients can use.
1. Meeting Details
List the date, day, time, recurring meeting (Yes/No), location, meeting leader and title, department, speakers, and more.
A list or roll call of people present, absent, and those absent with an apology.
3. Opening and Roll Call
This is the first item of the meeting to introduce its purpose and an overview of the agenda’s items.
The meeting leader carries out this section.
4. Address Safety Topic(s) — Meeting Agenda
- Distribution of new equipment safety guidelines
- Information on training day scheduled program
- New industry safety protocols per changes made as of the new year
- PowerPoint presentation (warehouse management structure, forklift regulations, aisle size and arrangement, and pallet arrangement).
5. Safety Topic of the Month
Discussion among members on the “safety topic of the month” from the company’s safety policy.
6. Questions/Concerns and Answers
An opportunity for the crew and workers to raise questions or safety concerns rising from work, the presentation, and the discussion.
7. Resolutions and Conclusion
A summary of the meeting’s resolution and information on the next week, month’s meetings.
Adjournment of the meeting.
Safety toolbox talks are a great way to promote general workplace safety.
They give employees awareness and encourage their involvement in the company-wide safety program.
They’re also a safety feedback mechanism from employees on their safety concerns and critical safety areas.
Most toolbox talks can be customized to fit specific departments, hazards, or safety issues.