In my series of five values I call Hard Hat Values I am starting with the most important one – Nobody Gets Hurt. Nobody.
In the Extractive Industries, safety is and should be the most important and top of mind value for all employees in the organization – from the field crews to the executive offices. Creating a culture of safety from top to bottom sends the message that nobody gets hurt.
You need to have a strong EHS (Environmental, Healty, and Safety) department where the EHS employees are not afraid to make the tough decisions. I had an excellent EHS manager tell me that when he was at work, he would be the biggest a-hole to ensure the safety rules were followed every day but he would also be your best friend after work. What kept him motivated was that he did not want to have the spouse and family of an employee who was seriously injured or killed at work look to him and ask “Why?”
In addition to a strong EHS department, every single employee in the organization must be focused on safety, from the CEO up to the Receptionist. Requiring a “safety share” from all employees before each meeting at all offices and sites is a great way to build a culture where safety is the number one value.