Some companies proactively seek out shop hazards and unsafe work practices while other organizations make changes only after disaster strikes. Reactive safety programs draw on lagging indicators (information gathered on the heels of an incident); proactive companies rely on leading indicators to identify unsafe conditions and predict the likelihood of an incident. Few will dispute that a proactive approach yields a safer workplace, but some struggle to determine which leading indicators deserve the most attention when crafting a safety strategy.
When you think about it, this lack of consensus makes sense. There is no single, one-size-fits- all leading indicator to create a risk and incident free workplace. Most safety experts stress leading indicators DO NOT function independently of one another—they work in concert together. This post examines some of the common components of a fall protection program and demonstrates how you can utilize effective leading indicators to create a safer work environment for your employees.