Regulating Human Behavior with the ABC's of Safety
Safety is Common. Why illnesses and injuries occur in the workplace. An expert in Health, Safety, Security, and Environmental says "Safety is Common" and human behavior can be regulated.
By: Jason Meyers
According to Menard, "Safety is Common." The common part of the phrase is "common sense". Menard relates that health, safety, security, and environmental is common sense that we use in every day lives and simplicity and communication is essential to establish an illness and injury-free work place. In example, Menard says, when we cross the street we are trained early on to look both ways before crossing the street-Why? Because we are aware that moving vehicles or in the world of safety, energy, is on the streets and we can be hit by a vehicle if we aren't aware of being struck by a vehicle. Why should this simplicity be ignored, overlooked or not considered in the industrial workforce?
Menard stated that regulating human behavior is key to eliminating work place illnesses and injuries. When asked if we can regulate human behavior, Menard does not hesitate when he responds with an astounding Yes. Human behavior can be regulated and is an essential component to health, safety, security, and environmental structures in the work place. But how do we regulate human behavior? Menard responds with the simple phrase that he terms the "ABC" of safety. the "A" is antecedent, the "B" is behavioral, and the "C" is consequence. According to Menard, wiring or re-wiring a worker's mindset is not as complex as it sounds. In fact, says Menard, our behaviors are regulated everyday without even knowing it. In example, you are late for work (the antecedent) and are cautioned to drive slow but refuse the drive slower because you are late for work (behavior) and you are stopped by law enforcement and receive a ticket (consequence)
Menard says when a company uses simplicity in its approach to HSSE, its more understandable and complexity is removed from the equation where supervisors, managers and workers can quickly understand and interpret policies and procedures, along with the reasons for hazard identification, reporting and correcting hazards, and instructing others in hazard identification. Menard states that when he investigates the root cause of an accident, also known as root cause analysis, Menard says he uses the five W's or the five "Why's. Again, simplicity says Menard. The five W's, which Menard terms the "tree steps of accident investigation"
Asked why major oil and gas companies continue to have major accidents, illnesses and injuries, Menard says after auditing some of the major oil and gas industries over the years, he has found that the policies, procedures, work procedures, and buy-in from management is to complex. "People cannot perform what they don't understand" says Menard.
In closing, Menard says his passion is safety similar to a hobby and if every worker goes comes to work safe and goes home safe, Menard says he leaves work with a smile on his face and considered that his job was done for that day. "One day at a time", says Menard and you have company that is raising the bar and leading the industry in safety and that is his vision of his work-product.