As we head back to work in our ‘new normal’ we need to be reminded that, as directors, we are still accountable and responsible for the Health, Safety and Wellbeing of our employees.
There will be many challenges as we try to adjust: organisational survival, new markets and engaging with our employees to ensure we improve collaboration, innovation, quality, productivity and how your people feel at work. There will also be the challenge of people coming back to work with different mindsets and their own unique issues. They might have been impacted directly by COVID-19 and need caring leadership due to their emotional state, or at the other end of the scale they might be back just to ‘crack on’ with productivity and they too will need some caring leadership to manage expectations in the ‘new normal’. Perhaps we won’t be quite so mindful of our responsibilities, as stated by the Health and Safety Executive, as we focus on other areas of our business. It is an absolute business and personal risk if you don’t understand and manage your Health, Safety and Wellbeing responsibilities.
All your people will be managed better if you have ‘a culture of care’ which is now needed more than ever before. That starts with caring about employee’s safety and wellbeing. Without a caring culture you will not get collaboration, innovation, improvements in quality and productivity, all vital for sustained recovery. What you will get is absenteeism, presenteeism, incidents and accidents, all of which will reflect on your organisational risk and reputation.
Sadly, there have already been reports of accidents as organisations try to focus on recovery, probably because they have forgotten about their responsibility and accountability for HSE legislation which is written in law.
If you’re not aware of the consequences of getting the health, safety and wellbeing of your employees (and the public) wrong then you should be. Getting it wrong could lead to the HSE assessing you for:
- Injury or stress of your employees – absent staff leading to pressure on resources, litigation
- Director accountability – fines or jail or stop work injunctions
- Reputational risk – Who would want to work for you, who would want to use your company
Because we are aware that SME’s might not have the time or resources to be able to focus on the Health, Safety and Wellbeing of their staff we have partnered with an innovative social enterprise partner to offer a unique on-line support service where we can work with you to assess your current HSW maturity, directly against HSE legislation for the HSW act 1974 and ISO 3100 risk standards. With the service you can focus on where you need to focus to improve with over 300 online resources to support that improvement. You can also run employee surveys free of charge to assess how they feel so you can gauge your culture at any time.
You can also report and record any safety and wellbeing incidents in real time to prevent them becoming accidents or out of control, all on a free mobile app. This is a free COVID-19 offered as part of the support for smaller organisations looking to prove they do care about the Health, Safety and Wellbeing of their people.
As leadership and engagement experts we advocate a culture of care.
Taking care of your people is the right, smart and legal thing to do!
Kevin Hard | Inspiration-all Ltd | Director
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