How do the senior executives in your organisation view health and safety

How do the senior executives in your organisation view health and safety?

As a burden on the business? As a necessary evil? Or as an opportunity to stand out from the crowd, and to demonstrate best practice in order to maximise business opportunities?

“If you think health and safety is expensive, try an accident” is a quotation attributed to Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the entrepreneur famous for starting the series of ventures under the “Easy” brand. His management experience started when he was in his early 20’s, working in his father’s shipping company. In 1991, there was an explosion and subsequent fire on an ageing, family owned oil tanker in the Mediterranean, resulting in the death of five crewmen.

Stelios readily admits that the day of the accident was the worst day of his life. Nonetheless, the experience was character forming, and taught him a lot about safety. As a result, he has taken health and safety very seriously in all of his subsequent business ventures. This is not unusual. The “it’ll never happen to me” attitude is commonplace in organisations, both large and small. Many reckon that just because they haven’t had an accident, they must be getting it right. Many only realise that’s not necessarily the case, however, until something goes wrong and someone gets injured.

Latest annual figures from the Health and Safety Executive confirm that in the UK in 2015/16, 144 workers were killed at work, 1.3 million workers were suffering from a work related illness, and the total cost of injuries and ill health in the workplaces totalled £14.1 billion. Many organisations still see safety as a burden on business. It might be seen as something which is too complicated, or perhaps too cumbersome or onerous. Perhaps even too expensive. Again, “if you think health and safety is expensive, try an accident”.

Pivotal Scotland’s IOSH Safety for Executives and Directors, a one day course running shortly in city centre venues in Glasgow and Edinburgh, aims to debunk the myths and prepare businesses to understand their responsibilities, introduce simple systems to help them manage health and safety, and develop and nurture a positive culture throughout their organisation.
The level of fines for organisations and individuals for safety breaches has increased significantly recently. Indeed, recent statistics show that the number of company directors who have been prosecuted for health and safety offences has trebled in a year.

Find out how to avoid adding to the statistics. Book on the Pivotal Scotland “IOSH Safety for Executives and Directors” course to help develop and nurture positive cultures and behaviours in your organisation.

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IOSH is the Chartered body for health and safety professionals. IOSH health and safety training courses are suitable for people of all levels in every sector and any organisation.

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For over 60 years, the British Safety Council has been campaigning for better health and safety at work. They are a not-for-profit organisation who work with members in more than 60 countries to develop best practice. Since 2004, British Safety Council has been a government-regulated awarding organisation with a comprehensive suite of health and safety qualifications.

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