Every second day in Australia, someone at work has to have a difficult conversation.
They have to tell a family that someone they love is not coming home from work today.
“Mate, accidents happen”, some say afterward at the pub.
Well I say that even one accident is too many. They know it, too. So why is it so hard?
As a young sparkie I sat in too many toolbox safety talks, where the team spent the time joking around, too embarrassed to show that they were actually interested.
As a coach I’ve listened to too many stories of people covering up a mate’s antics, only to regret never having had the courage to speak up before it was too late.
And as an executive advisor I’ve helped too many business leaders overcome the frustration of navigating the long-lasting damage that came from someone’s split-second bad decision.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Accidents don’t just happen.
I believe that the trouble is this: Safety isn’t safe.
It’s not safe to talk about. It’s not safe to stand up.
Staying silent feels safer than watching out for a mate that would just shoot back: “Yeah, whatever, mum”.
Joking around feels safer than standing up and sharing a better way of doing things.
When a team feels they can’t stand up, they’re left sitting in their own frustration.
I can’t sit by, and they don’t have to.
They just need help unlocking their potential as a leader.
Leaders don’t turn up just because you put “leadership” in a job ad, they turn up in your own team when you create the environment that helps them rise.
That’s when they speak up.
That’s when they make the tough calls.
That’s when they have the confidence to know that the tough calls are the right calls, the calls that take the business further than it would have got on its own, and the calls that mean never having to make a tough call to a workmate’s loved ones.
I’m Anton Guinea, and I’m here to make safety safe!