Risk Management – Not a Difficult Concept, But Hard to Execute For Sure

Risk Management – Have you ever been to a company or corporation break room and it says; safety first? It is this constant bombardment that gets the employees and team members thinking in terms of safety as one of the primary concerns of the company even up and beyond productivity and profits. If you consider that when someone is hurt on the job that such an accident ends up costing the company millions of dollars. You can see why it is important to have absolute buy-in from all the workers – easier said than done.

Okay so let’s go ahead and talk about this for second. Specifically the noble intent to boost safety through a rigorous risk management strategy. And then look at the execution of the plan. You see, implementing a set of risk management procedures can be risky in and of itself. Prior to retirement, I had founded a franchising company, and I had personally written all of our operation’s manuals. It was easily a six month endeavor force into three.

Now then, there is something I learn while trying to get our franchisee team members and their employees to follow our risk management. Methods incorporating all the safety features of our equipment into their operations. What I found was that there were employees. Often males in their 20s who seemed to like to take risks. And took risks because the manual told them not too. It was as if it was a challenge, and they felt as if they were smart enough, skilled enough, or had the talent. To overcome any risks, or mitigate any safety issues themselves while doing those jobs.

Whereas it was true that many of these young guys could easily accomplish these tasks without really causing a safety issue because they were competent, knowledgeable, and had experience in what they were doing. It turned out to be a negative because the newer employees who were not as qualified would mimic their behavior. And that’s where the trouble started. It is really easy to put forth a risk management strategy, or a well-engineered and thought out safety plan. But what is really difficult is implementing it and executing it in such a way that there is buy-in with all the employees and workers.

If you don’t accomplish the second objective, then the first is irrelevant. You can have the best safety plan in the world, but if no one follows it. You’ve completely wasted your time, and you are no better off than you were before, perhaps worse off. Indeed I hope you will please consider the lessons that I had to learn the hard way. Think on it.