If you’ve ever said, “I never noticed that before,” you are not alone. It happens to us all when we see things repeatedly.
Familiarity is the white noise of the mind, and sometimes obvious things get missed because our brain is accustomed to seeing things in a certain way. Take the FedEx logo for instance. Unless someone pointed it out to you, you probably never noticed the “hidden” symbol between the “E” and the “X.” After someone shows it you though, it sticks out like a sore thumb—or a right-facing arrow to be precise.
The same holds true in the workplace.
The axiomatic “second set of eyes” can make all the difference in spotting potential risks. Even the most diligent risk assessors are bound to miss something if they’re going it alone. But what if, instead of a second set of eyes, you had dozens or hundreds of eyes examining potential risks? By diversifying the “eyes” on potential risks, you’ve created a Risk Reporting Culture, which is a foundational element of Operational Excellence.
The win of having a robust Risk Reporting Culture must be complemented by organizational discipline to continue enhanced reporting. Organizations can then fully round out their culture by continuously improving risk sensitivity, process execution and learning. Using a Process Execution Management strategy to make sure that your organization has embraced these core functions will help you identify areas of improvement as well as areas of higher maturity.
The first step in a successful Process Execution Management strategy is using risk-based software solutions to their fullest capacity to measure leading indicators of risk performance. This means going beyond the dated compliance-only software approach of yesteryear to one that combines both compliance and risk performance prediction functionality.
5 Ways to Enhance a Risk-Focused Culture
- 1) Take It From the Top: As with most successful corporate initiatives, it’s imperative to get C-level operational leadership to own and steward a Risk-Focused Culture.
- 2) The Education Situation: Companies need to educate their workers on why reporting is so important. There are many reasons workers avoid reporting risks—from saying they are too busy to do so to lack of understanding and fear of retribution. Educating your workforce on why, what and how they should report risk will improve your Risk Reporting Culture, which will go a long way toward keeping your workers—and the company itself—safe.
- 3) Make it Easy: If risk reporting is complicated, chances are workers will avoid it. They’re busy enough as is, so don’t make risk reporting seem like an added burden.
- 4) Next …: After a risk is reported, what happens next? Employees will lose interest in reporting risks if they believe nothing will happen. Following up on reported risks is a must.
- 5) Evaluate and Measure: Every initiative has room for improvement. Continue to monitor the risk assessment process and make adjustments when necessary.
A clear message and proper, consistent education combined with risk assessment software used to its fullest potential will go a long way toward establishing a proper Process Execution Management strategy.
To learn more, please join me on April 12, 2017, at 2 p.m. CST for our next webinar “Using Process Execution Management to Increase Safety Performance.” If you can’t make it, you’ll be able to watch the webinar on demand shortly after the event.