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FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Discuss all things health and safety.

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markspark7
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FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by markspark7 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:09 am

Is it just me??? The age old question.

Do you ever get so frustrated with your H&S roles and peoples general attitudes that you actually utter the immortal works "Why do I bother"?

I work in a very old Steel pressings works where H&S is practically none existant. We talk a good game but when you actually scratch the surface it's a festering mess of negligence, poor management and poor attitudes. And that's just the management team.!!

I took on this role free of charge , that's to say I'm not getting any more money than I did before I took it on and I feel like I'm working in a playground at times , infact school kids would probably have a better understanding og H&S than the muppets I call collegues :roll:

How did you guys manage to change a very non H&S coulture?? Did you ever have to resort to violence???

Regards

Mark
Last edited by Waterbaby on Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Edit re: ICRA status

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by WillPool » Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:42 am

Hi Mark

I think we have all been there :(

You have to tackle it bit by bit, sometimes taking baby steps.

I tried to get 'personal' with the staff, finding out their likes, dislikes and using that to motivate them in the world of safety ;)

There are many ways to skin the proverbial cat, incentives, discipline, training, etc etc and sometimes a blend of all of it :thumbup:

All you can ask for is continual improvement and sometimes it is hard to see that improvement for constantly staring at the bigger picture and where you want to be ;)

Keep your chin up and record all the good stuff that is happening and publish it to show the workers the progress you are achieving, I have a very large visual hours since last reportable injury graph in my office and when tthe frustration starts to set in, I look at that and think well we must be doing something right ;)

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by markspark7 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:57 am

Cheers Will

Unfortunately patience is not a virtue I possess . I like to get things done and I hate the fact that I'm not making enough progress even though my Superiors are very pleased with what I've achieved in the time I've being doing the role.

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by Penfold » Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:25 am

Hi

Is the management on board with you and changing things to make it a safe place to be? (maybe not reading your message!)

I always found talking to the guys on the ground, one thing I did once was we brought in a guy who was medically retired following an accident some time before, he came in and spoke to his "mates" and colleagues and spoke about the impact its had on his life and family. The most powerful message was he couldn't pick up his grandkids due to the back pain or join in with their games. It made a massive difference to see one of their own and how bad it was for him

Just an idea

regards

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by markspark7 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:48 am

Penfold wrote:Hi

Is the management on board with you and changing things to make it a safe place to be? (maybe not reading your message!)


regards

Penners
The directors are on board has it's their names and mine on the company policy, however the senior management and their team leaders are not on board although they are all quick to highlight the companies failings.
The issues stem from years of bad management where the directors left them alone to get on with it, it's only now when the directors have started to get more involved have they realised just how bad things are.

I feel like i'm one man taking on everybody else. I've even had senior managers telling me and an auditer that H&S issues aren't their problem. :roll:


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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by Alexis » Mon Jul 18, 2016 11:06 am

Hi Marksparks. Some good advice from Willpool and Penners who have both been there, like many H&S personnel.

I wonder, if, the fact that you took on this role "free of charge" is where some of the problem is!

Did the Management give you the role to "shut you up" perhaps? If so, then Senior Managers and Team Leaders may not have the correct respect (yet) for you and the role you have taken on. It may seem to them that management have "put you in your box" now and nothing will change.

You have to get the people on the shop floor involved using the methods Willpool highlighted. Set up a Safety Committee making sure you have at least one or two of the loudest voices on the shop floor involved. Listen to them and what they suggest. If you don't listen to these colleagues and guide them towards good practice, you really won't ever be able to "demand" they comply.

Smile, listen, discuss is the way forward to keep your sanity and improve things. You will I am sure. H&S people all learn how to be patient. .salut
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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by Mikejames161 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:01 pm

Hi Marksparks

It is a good thing that the directors are on board. Maybe suggest to them a managerial TBT outlining the responsibilities of the managers and team leaders and also the implications of what could happen to them if something went wrong, maybe using case law as examples. Unfortunately having a health and safety person in the company gives the impression to some managers that this takes away their responsibilities.

Another idea is maybe discuss with the directors about setting up a managerial health and safety committee which would include the directors and managers to discuss any issues and how to move forward say once a month. My experience shows the management tend not to be so cocky when it is in front of the directors.

I don't know if that is useful I just thought Id give some input.

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by markspark7 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:32 pm

Mikejames161 wrote:Hi Marksparks

It is a good thing that the directors are on board. Maybe suggest to them a managerial TBT outlining the responsibilities of the managers and team leaders and also the implications of what could happen to them if something went wrong, maybe using case law as examples. Unfortunately having a health and safety person in the company gives the impression to some managers that this takes away their responsibilities.

Another idea is maybe discuss with the directors about setting up a managerial health and safety committee which would include the directors and managers to discuss any issues and how to move forward say once a month. My experience shows the management tend not to be so cocky when it is in front of the directors.

I don't know if that is useful I just thought Id give some input.
My first committee meeting is tomorrow so that should be interesting. I've purposefully made sure that the attendees have come from every dept.ranging from low level operators upto the commercial director.
I've asked that all management , supervisors , engineers and team leaders all attend a IOSH managing safely course has the majority of people employed here have been here forever and I think that most of them genuinely don't know what they are or are not responsible / accountable for.

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by markspark7 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:36 pm

[quote="Alexis"]

I wonder, if, the fact that you took on this role "free of charge" is where some of the problem is!

Did the Management give you the role to "shut you up" perhaps? If so, then Senior Managers and Team Leaders may not have the correct respect (yet) for you and the role you have taken on. It may seem to them that management have "put you in your box" now and nothing will change.


quite the opposite. They gave it to me as they know I would be the person most likely to succeed and that i would be very vocal in any short falls especially in compliance with HSE etc.
I report directly to the board in every aspect of my job so they are fully aware of what they are letting themselfs in for.

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by Alexis » Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:49 pm

That's good to know Mark. :D .salut
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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by Blackstone » Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:33 pm

Hi Mark,

I know where you are coming from. I've done the head banging against the wall moments and the why do I bother moments too.

I had been in my previous company for 15 years doing various roles and took over H&S on top of Quality. H&S had been poorly managed up until that point. It did take a long time to get the trust of the employee, but as others have said just doing the little things, and actually doing them, let everyone know that if they ask something will be done, even if that something is 'I've looked into it and we cant change it for X reason'. Trust will build and you can them build a head of steam to tackle bigger issues.

You seem to be in a better situation in that your management are backing you!

Luckily now I'm in a job where they guys only know me as a H&S Manager.

Persevere and you will succeed.

My main bit of advise, would be to least the frustration at the door when you go home each day. Nothing worse than a frustrated person going home to the family each night.

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Re: FRUSTRATION WITH YOUR JOB

Post by jonsi » Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:42 pm

One thing Senior Managers (and Team Leaders to a lesser degree) understand is cost. Hard £££s.

Explain the situation to them in terms of cost, they understand those terms sure enough.

Explain how 1 day off work costs £x - made up of lost production, cost of Overtime to cover, cost of paperwork (if you don't have figures ...mke 'em up because chances are they won't know either!) etc. Show them how much absence cost over the last 5 years or so. That's bottom line cash.

Explain what the cost would be of an accident where someone broke a leg or an arm; Time off, investigations, Solicitors, Courts, Publicity etc. When they say they're insured, explain how their premium will rise as a result - or how their premium could possibly decrease if they invested in H&S by means of doing this or that e.g. marking out pedestrian/traffic segregation. Explain the cost of the wonderful FFI (£140 per hour or thereabouts??) for the HSE to tell them the same thing you did 6 months ago, get examples of HSE prosecutions for similar businesses and the fines levied (which aren't insurable btw).

Let them know that H&S working properly actually increases profitability by making sure people can work more productively and more safely.
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