Mike Hourigan Workplace Safety Speaker

Safety Speaker

Accidents Creep in, When Guards are Let Down

What do layoffs, mergers, location changes, acquisitions, new production facilities and changes of management all have in common?

Hint: it’s not what you think – and that’s the problem.

As a safety speaker who has been delivering safety keynote speeches on safety for many years, I will be “pleased” to give you the answer: whenever a change occurs, it is a virtual guarantee that serious accidents will increase. Of course, I put the word pleased in quotes; there is nothing pleasant about a badly injured worker.

As a workplace safety motivational speaker who started his career on the factory floor, I know this as a fact: accidents creep in, when guards are let down. Serious accidents occur when there is a rush to get through something, or stress and anxiety shift focus, or co-workers allow one another to lapse in good judgment.

There is nothing pleasant about safety stress
I call it “Safety Stress,” where what the organization is going through takes precedence over safety. No one likes the prospect of a plant about to close, or the uncertainty of a merger, or an unrealistic deadline or even having to work overtime under short-staffed conditions. Whatever the particular stressor your organization is currently facing, nothing is worth a work injury.

It is precisely when stress levels rise that terrible injuries occur and, in those times, workers need one another more than ever and workers need to be there for one another. Whatever stressors your organization may be facing understand that there is power in leaning on one another and looking out for the other person.

I might also add that as a workplace safety speaker, I have heard far too many stories (told in confidence) about increases in drug and alcohol when stress takes on a powerful role, or bullying or anger or high levels of unnecessary risk taking. Those are precisely the times when people who see something must say something or at least report something.

Safety is everyone’s business
When an organization is under stress, there is often a tendency to shift to a “them and us” mentality, however the division normally breaks down. Perhaps the division is white collar versus blue collar or salaried versus hourly – or whatever division. That is also wrong. A careless production worker can cause an unsafe factory condition; a drunk office worker can kill innocent people; a lapse in standards can lead to substandard products of services.

Truly, when an organization is going through hard times, safety is everyone’s role and stupidity caused by stress or anger should be immediately addressed and examined.
It is in times of “Safety Stress” where there must be an all-hands effort to remember that stress and change may be painful, but it is temporary.

You can’t easily heal a broken back, terrible burns or the results of a tragic fall. If stress brings the worst outcomes: a closed plant, a cross country or out-of-country move, a workforce reduction or the threat of violence, we must remember not to sacrifice our health and the health of others in the work place we hold dear.

To contact Mike Hourigan, Safety Motivational Workplace Speaker, please call Mike today at (704) 875-3030 or fill out the form below.

Safety Speaker for the Workplace, Mike Hourigan

Safety Speaker Mike Hourigan

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    Mike does much more than present one-of-a-kind keynote speeches - he provides fun and fact filled breakout sessions as well as dynamic training programs for numerous organizations like Marriott, Disney, Harley-Davidson and even the U.S. Army.