Hogan Safety Report — gaining a competitive advantage through workplace safety

2010 has been a year filled with safety violations at the workplace. These violations have in turn led to a variety of catastrophic consequences.

On February 7, 2010, a power plant explosion occurred in Middletown, Connecticut that resulted in the death of 5 workers and injuries to another 27. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that it had found a total of 371 safety violations in the construction of the plant, 225 of which it considered deliberate.

On April 20, 2010, BP’s drilling rig Deepwater Horizon exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, leading to the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry . The explosion killed 11 platform workers, injured 17 others and released 62,000 barrels of crude oil daily into the sea. The spill cost BP about US$3.5 billion and caused extensive damage to marine and wildlife habitats as well as to the Gulf’s fishing and tourism industries. BP admitted that the disaster was a consequence of poor safety behaviors and procedures. The White House oil spill commission reported today that there was not a culture of safety on that rig and serious mistakes were made ahead of the tragedy.

On August 5, 2010, the Chile mining accident occurred when part of the San José copper-gold mine in the Atacama Desert near Copiapó, Chile collapsed. Fortunately, all 33 miners trapped 2,300 feet below the ground for 69 days were rescued. The total cost of the rescue operation was estimated at US$20 million. The mine had a history of instability that had led to previous accidents, including one death. The 33 trapped miners initially tried to escape through a ventilation shaft system, but the ladders required by mining safety codes were missing.

These and many similar tragic accidents could have been prevented if workplace safety had been given greater priority. According to Hogan Assessment Systems, 3 components that must come together to create a culture of workplace safety are: a) worker personality, b) a culture of employee engagement and c) organizational leadership.

Based on 28 years of scientific research on workplace safety, Hogan has devised a Safety Competency Model based on six dimensions. A thorough understanding of the following 6 safety-related dimensions can help organizations enhance productivity, reduce turnover, lower accident rates and increase team and customer satisfaction:

1. Defiant- Compliant: Low scorers ignore authority and company rules. High scorers willingly follow rules and guidelines.

2. Panicky-Strong: Low scorers tend to panic under pressure and make mistakes. High scorers tend to be sure of their decisions.

3. Irritable- Cheerful: Low scorers lose their tempers easily and then make mistakes. High scorers tend to remain calm, even in stressful situations.

4. Distractible- Vigilant: Low scores can be easily bored, and become inattentive. High scorers tend to stay focused on the task at hand.

5. Reckless- Cautious: Low scorers are prone to taking unnecessary risks. High scorers tend to evaluate options before making risky decisions.

6. Arrogant- Trainable: Low scorers overestimate their own competence and as a result may be difficult to train. High scorers tend to be willing to listen to advice and take advantage of opportunities to learn more.

To learn more about the Hogan SafeSystem and Safety Report, http://www.performanceprograms.com/surveys/Hogan_Safety_Report.html[click here]. Please call 1-800-565-4223 if you are interested in attending a free webinar on the Hogan Safety Report and its applications.

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