Innovation has always been valued in the world of business, but most people believe that it is up to entrepreneurs and other “idea people” to come up with new concepts and strategies. Those in middle-management and below are often lost in the shuffle despite being right in the middle of a business’s operations. This is a real shame, especially since those who spend 40 hours a week in the workplace have more influence than many people realize. They directly affect their business’s productivity, and their innovation and creativity should be nurtured and encouraged. This, of course, can be accomplished through innovation training, but that’s not the only way to encourage productivity and success in the workplace. As strange as it may sound to some people, the best way to ensure that your workplace remains productive and encourages creativity is to focus on safety.
Maintaining a safe workplace is obviously very important if you want to avoid costly accidents and injuries on the job, but it has several other benefits as well. Here are just a few of the many benefits of keeping your employees safe when they’re on the job.
Some employees may complain about having several rules and regulations regarding their safety, but the truth is that these rules are great at giving employees peace of mind. Nobody really wants to work in a needlessly dangerous environment, and it would make sense that a company that doesn’t adhere to basic safety regulations would scare people away and lead to a high employee turnover rate. On the other hand, a business that takes the time to enforce those regulations and does what it can to keep its workers safe will be able to better put those workers at ease. If your employees don’t have to worry about injuring themselves or causing an accident, they will be happier and better prepared to focus on their work.
There are few things that can destroy an employee’s productivity faster than not feeling appreciated. An employee who doesn’t feel like their safety is a priority obviously won’t feel appreciated by their employer, and they won’t feel encouraged to be innovative or productive. A cynical person might see putting safety regulations in place as nothing more than a company avoiding legal punishment, but it can also show that a business cares about its workers.
When employees feel safe and appreciated by their employers, they are more likely to be engaged when they are at work.
When employees feel safe and appreciated by their employers, they are more likely to be engaged when they are at work. In many ways, engagement is more important than productivity and innovation. At the very least, it leads to greater productivity and innovation. An employee needs to enjoy their job and feel engaged by what they need to do before they can really come up with new and innovative ideas.
Innovation and productivity are important to the success of any business, but few people realize how much those qualities go hand-in-hand with workplace safety. As long as you take safety regulations seriously and adhere to them as closely as possible, you can have a happy and productive workplace.
Tom Reddon is a forklift specialist and blog manager for the National Forklift Exchange. He also sits on the Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association (MHEDA) Executive Dialogue team. Follow him on Twitter at @TomReddon.
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