More than ever before, occupational health and safety has become a major priority in almost every UK workplace. It has become the mantra for many government-advertising campaigns that "every employee has the right to return home safely" and how " it is the responsibility of both employers and employees to ensure a safe workplace". |
Organisations must, by law, ensure that their employees are adequately trained to perform at their job in the safest way possible and that particular occupational health and safety policies are adhered to. Depending on the organisation, the employees involved, the information that is to be communicated, there is a multitude of different communication pathways that can be taken to deliver a message of workplace safety. It can be as simple as an OHS trainer standing in front of a group, or perhaps a group discussion, or role play. Technology such as powerpoint, video or e-learning programs can be used as either the main training tool or as an aid to reinforce the spoken message.
Unfortunately, a topic such as workplace safety can quite often fall on deaf ears. For some people, the thought of discussing manual handling risks or reporting near misses with a manager or colleagues would be about as exciting as watching paint dry. In many cases, it may take a serious injury or fatality, to ultimately alter the mindset of an individual or even the culture of an organisation.
However, incorporating video into a training session on safety can provide a range of benefits. These include:
1. Continuity of the message - Whether it is the induction of new staff, or conducting refresher training for existing employees, using video to deliver the message will ensure that every trainee receives exactly the same message, the same way. That way everyone is on the "same page", which is an important component to an organisation's ability to to comply with legislation and achieve a health and safe environment.
2. A picture tells a thousand words. In most instances, video can deliver a message far more efficiently and effectively than the spoken word alone, especially when trying to describe a particular action or technique. Time is a precious commodity nowadays. Any opportunity to communicate a message more efficiently will always have a positive effect on the workplace.
3. Most importantly, video does an excellent job of conveying emotion. If the intention is to send home a message of great importance, the ability to tap into people's emotions can be an excellent strategy. A message or idea is more likely to be remembered if it has impact. As witnessed now on many TV advertising campaigns - whether it be for safety at work, anti smoking, or safe driving - "shock value" is an approach used to not only ensure the audience receives the message, but it sneaks its way into their subconscious.
Whilst video enjoys a number of benefits in communicating safety, it is still important to realise the target audience and the actual content of the video itself. Is it relevant? Will it connect with the target audience? Does it suit the rest of the training/course material? Does it sell the message?
Related Articles -
Health, Safety, Health and Safety,