Health and safety meetings and effective human resource management
This article by Derek Stockley provides insight into how workplace health and safety meetings provide a pointer to the effective management of human resources.
Consulting employees about health and safety
The Victorian government has legislated the requirement for employers to consult employees on workplace health and safety issues.*
Victoria has made good progress in reducing the number of workplace injuries and deaths.
It concerns me when government has to legislate 'good business' practice.
I personally have been aware of the benefits of well conducted health and safety meetings for many years. I was fortunate to play a role in some key health and safety meetings in a large public enterprise when such concepts were being introduced. The health and safety models used then became the blueprint for the Victorian health and safety workplace system.
Some organisations, particularly smaller companies, have not realised the full potential of health and safety meetings (sometimes called toolbox meetings).
Family run companies may not be aware of the benefits. Family members tend to 'run the company' without the involvement of key supervisors and team leaders. They may consult with individual staff members, but they fail to organise workplace meetings where ideas are shared.
I have written about the employee engagement concept previously.**
A simple and effective way to engage employees is through their participation and involvement in worthwhile meetings.
Organisations should make the most of the health and safety legislation and extend the content of meetings to consultation on employee matters generally. Health and safety is just one aspect of employee welfare in the workplace. Broader matters should also be discussed.
Individual consultation is useful, but sometimes the synergy gained from a group meeting can be very beneficial.
Next week’s article: Organising effective meetings.
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Related articles and links
* Workplace Consultation - Victorian WorkCover Authority (WorkSafe Website) - explains the new requirement from 1 January 2006 and provides access to useful resources.
** Employee engagement and organisational pride - employee engagement and organisational pride are discussed in this free article. Employee engagement is also defined.
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This article was last modified on 19 January 2006.