Having an honest conversation with a work colleague to address a specific issue can at times be challenging. We know, however, that communicating effectively plays a vital role in the success of any job. Effective communication becomes particularly important in the workplace when communicating issues around safety.
When Should You Speak Up?
We know that effective communication is crucial to a safe working environment but when would the appropriate time be to speak up about certain issues? There are endless examples and possible scenarios of when you should speak up and address an issue openly.
Simply ask yourself these questions below to determine whether you need to address and resolve an issue with a work colleague before any further work can continue.
- Am I or my staff working as safely as possible?
- Do you have the proper knowledge or training to complete the task effectively and efficiently?
- Do you have the correct tools and/or staff to complete the task effectively?
- Is the working environment safe and safeguarded accordingly to complete the task at hand?
- Are there any hazards present which could injure you and/or others?
If you have answered NO to any of the questions above, then it is time to speak up and address the issues above openly so that you or your staff can complete a task safely and effectively.
How Do You Communicate An Issue Effectively?
- Set time aside to openly discuss the issues which need be addressed and offer possible solutions such as enrolling your staff into a health and safety training, etc.
- Be sure to involve the necessary staff in your discussions and speak openly with them about the issues at hand
- If you see someone working unsafely, stop them before they injure themselves (or others) and have an open and respectful conversation with them about it. Approach your superior if you feel uncomfortable openly approaching someone about this.
- Ensure that a solution has been found and that the correct measures have been taken to resolve an issue. You can do this by conducting follow-up conversations with the necessary people.
Addressing issues directly by having honest conversations in the workplace can be tough as these types of conversations can sometimes be difficult to have. Ensuring safety in your working environment, however, is of the utmost importance. If you see something that can put yourself or others at risk for injury then it is vital that you speak up about the problem and tackle it head on! Creating a safe working environment is fundamental to completing a task effectively and efficiently.
By Tamrin Feldman