Who Is in Charge of Leadership and Safety?

Having a strong safety leader is a vital part of any program, but upper management buy-in is what truly helps makes safety programs run smoothly. Without leadership, a company wouldn’t have much at all. If there’s no one to lead the ship, the company can’t run efficiently or effectively.

The safety manager is the program creator and backbone, but division leaders on the operation side need to drive the safety program home. They need to lead toolbox talks, stretches, the behavior-based observation (BBO) program, weekly safety meetings, focus audits, and site inspections as well as participate in weekly management safety inspections.

A division scorecard is one way to review all these components weekly, showing exactly who has been doing what and giving each division leader a score to see where his or her team may require improvement.

The scorecard can be versatile for different projects and divisions, but it’s not a means to get someone in trouble if they have a low score one week. Rather, it’s a tool for the safety manager to coach and mentor division leaders and their team members if required. No one is ever alone if there’s a struggle with a part of the program. A dedicated safety manager manages the program overall, but it’s the division leaders’ job to run on a day-to-day basis.

If a division leader is struggling with his or her division or project, he or she can look to the safety manager who has the safety program training and understanding necessary for success.

Upper management needs to drive the safety program from the top down. Without leadership, you wouldn’t have much so make sure you have the right people and programs in place.