Keeping you and your co-workers safe at work, whether you build skyscrapers or websites, is something that is everyone's business and is an important aspect of any professional environment. Many companies have systems in place to keep you safe from some things, like smoke and fire, and have security systems with access control, motion detectors, and cameras keep us secure. However, when it comes to the basics of safety, it's the people who have to be aware and take action. Here are a few ways you can take initiative and stay safe and secure wherever you work.
There are rules in place for a reason. Make sure you are familiar with all of them before getting to work. These could be basic OSHA guidelines for the office, or detailed process and procedural rules for a certain task. If you have any questions make sure you ask a manager before trying something on your own. Your office and security rules will also tell you why carbon monoxide detection is important and why you need to keep your hardhat on. Become familiar with every detail of your office rules.
It sounds simple, but keeping your office or facility tidy will eliminate hundreds of possible accidents over the course of a career. Cleaning up a small spill in a break room or sweeping up dust and small debris on a shop floor all contribute to a safe work environment. When it comes to safety, it's the small things that make a difference. So wipe it up, mop it up, or sweep it up whenever there's a surface that needs it. Be sure to keep the floor and main working areas clean and clear or debris. This is where you’ll spend the most time and probably need the most organized space.
No matter where you work, there's a dress code. When it comes to safety, you're place of employment probably has a few extra items you should be aware of. If you work in any sort of environment where your clothing could get caught or tangled in machinery, be sure to wear appropriate garments. This could also mean wearing guards or ties, for sleeves, hair, or otherwise even somewhat loose items. Additionally, if you work in an area where eye or ear protection is warranted, don't decide on your own that the rules don't apply to you. They do; and they're there to keep you safe, even if it's from yourself.
Jokes and pranks are all well and good when the five o'clock whistle blows, but while you're on the job, leave the tomfoolery at home. Horseplay and pranks can easily get someone hurt, even if they are quite benign in nature and no harm was intended. There's plenty of time for joking with and pranking your friends on your own time. Don't be the class clown of the office and let it cost you or your co-worker an injury or worse.
When it comes to safety, if it doesn't seem like a good thing to do, it probably isn't. Be aware of your actions and their consequences at all times. A company can lose millions of dollars in worker production, insurance claims, and other expenses due to a lack of proper safety and with a little foresight you can do your part to avoid becoming a statistic.
Written By: Eileen O'Shanassy
Eileen O'Shanassy is a freelance writer and blogger based out of Flagstaff, AZ. She writes on a variety of topics and loves to research and write. She enjoys baking, biking, and kayaking. Check out her Twitter @eileenoshanassy.