09/28/2018 | Safety

Fostering a Safety Culture: Impressions from WasteCon 2018

By Pat Hudson, Vice President, Sales & Marketing

It was gratifying to have so many recycling industry pros stop by the Leadpoint booth at WasteCon last month.  SWANA did a terrific job with workshops, exhibits, and networking again this year.

What surprised me was what people said when they saw this image on one of the panels in our exhibit. The shot was taken at one of our MRF partner sites in southern Nevada. People immediately related it to safety.

That wasn’t the intention of the photo; it was selected to show the coaching and leadership between Leadpoint’s onsite managers and our MRF employees.

The reaction reinforces that safety was top-of-mind at WasteCon, as it is at Leadpoint. Like one of the presenters said at the Safety Ambassadors for Change panel, “…when it comes to safety, we’re all on the same team.”

That team philosophy is at the heart of the safety committees Leadpoint forms with its employees and our customers’ staff at the MRFs where we work. We drive-home these seven elements of a productive safety culture at every site, every day.

  1. Common Practice.Safe work behavior is simply “the way we do things around here.”
  2. Trust.Leaders must have every employees’ best interests in mind regarding safety.
  3. Interpersonal Contact.We monitor how willing and able line and staff employees are to approach each other to discuss safety issues and coach them to foster an open dialog.
  4. Safety Wins.When safety butts heads with other priorities, which one wins? We always err toward safety.
  5. Attitudes & Perceptions.The safety attitudes, perceptions, competencies, and behaviors of every person on the floor, from managers to sorters, determines what’s accepted as common practice in the MRF.
  6. Risk-taking.When someone takes a risk, what happens? These are coachable moments.
  7. Who’s Watching?The safety behaviors our people demonstrate when we aren’t looking is a true measure of the strength of a site’s safety culture.

Leadpoint is “all in” on safety with our customers and every employee on our team. Safety assessments, audits, and program development are all part of the service we provide. Talk to your Leadpoint rep today about how we can work with you and your team to build a strong safety culture at your MRF.

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