SafetyAtWorkBlog’s top two articles for 2016

As 2016 comes to a close, I have dipped into the statistics and found the two SafetyAtWorkBlog articles that had the highest readership in 2016 were articles discussing the thoughts of Michael Tooma and Andrew Hopkins. Both of the articles were challenging – one of the existence or relevance of safety culture and the other about how occupational health and safety (OHS) is desperate for a change and struggling to start that change.

The statistics should not be surprising as both Tooma and Hopkins have a high recognition rate in the Australian OHS field and both have and international context – Hopkins through his analysis of industrial disasters and Tooma through his “safety differently” world tour. Continue reading “SafetyAtWorkBlog’s top two articles for 2016”

Another safety magazine bites the dust

safety-solution-01On November 15, 2016, the NSCA Foundation (NSCAF) and Westwick-Farrow Media (WFM) announced a new publishing deal for one of Australia’s few remaining occupational health and safety (OHS) publications, National Safety. The media release was very upbeat about the change but the reality is that Australian OHS professionals and business operators will lose a free, hard-copy source of safety information, Safety Solutions.

National Safety magazine is a good magazine that, although long promoted as the journal of the NSCA Foundation, has a good reputation for independent and informative OHS articles and seems to have had a loyal readership amongst OHS professionals. There had been no hint that the magazine was “in trouble” or that a change was warranted. Safety Solutions has more of an advertorial approach and seems to appeal more to the small business owner and OHS professional who is more focused on the manufacturing industry sector. The magazine has existed since 2002 and has been a consistent presence. Continue reading “Another safety magazine bites the dust”

OHS media could increase its influence, if it wanted to

The decline of newspapers and other mainstream media is well-established (an excellent recent analysis of this has been undertaken by Ross Gittins), as is the increase in the influence of online or digital media.  The information sources for occupational health and safety (OHS) have undergone a similar change, often due to the same technological and economic factors affecting the mainstream.  But OHS has ALWAYS been a niche issue in communications and the media and it will continue to be so except that the niche can increase in size and the new media technologies could increase OHS’ influence in managerial and business decision processes, if someone accepts the challenge.

CCH OHS Cover 1996It is important to look at a major fault in communication strategies related to OHS.  The mainstream media never covered workplace safety issues to the extent possible. OHS was almost always covered by the industrial relations reporter, if the newspaper had one.  The tripartite nature of industrial relations (IR) negotiations – government, business, unions – provided the main sources for OHS content and OHS was always communicated in or with the IR context.  Rarely was OHS seen to merit its own story.

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When did LinkedIn become the social media for brown-nosers?

PikachuLinkedIn is a useful adjunct to the social media of Facebook, MySpace and many other incarnations.  The professional network is a terrific idea but it has several problems – one is misuse or misunderstanding LinkedIn’s function, the other is the ridiculousness of Endorsements.  Given that LinkedIn is as popular in the OHS profession as in any other, the problems, as I see them, are worth discussing.

Linking to Strangers

According to Wikipedia:

“One purpose of the site is to allow registered users to maintain a list of contact details of people with whom they have some level of relationship, called Connections.”

From the user’s perspective this is the principal purpose of LinkedIn .  One is able to maintain informal contact with current and previous work colleagues.  When one’s work status changes, the linked network is advised.  As many contact details as one wants to include are placed on an individual’s profile.

There is a sense to linking peers and colleagues but this purpose, in my opinion, is seriously degraded by total strangers requesting to be linked to you. Continue reading “When did LinkedIn become the social media for brown-nosers?”

2012 in review – SafetyAtWorkBlog

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. This blog was viewed about 150,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 8 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

New anti-bullying campaign launched

Brodies’ Law concerning workplace bullying is set to gain more media attention today as the Victorian Attorney-General, Robert Clark, launches a new anti-bullying campaign.

The campaign has been pushed for by the parents of Brodie Panlock, Damien and Rae, and was whispered about at recent public hearings into workplace bullying.  However, the media campaign gained a shaky start on the ABC from psychologist Evelyn Field.  Her interview, which was videoed, appears almost off-topic and never gains the gravitas the subject of workplace bullying deserves.  The ABC may be partly at fault here by choosing Evelyn Fields instead of the Attorney-General or Brodie’s parents.

The media release of the Attorney-General (not yet available online) states that the ‘Take a stand against bullying’ campaign

“… will see information about bullying and Brodie’s Law distributed to more than 8,000 schools, workplaces and police stations across Victoria.”

When one considers the number of schools, workplaces and police stations in Victoria, 8,000 is not a lot.  Victoria Police has been very supportive of Brodie’s Law and the Panlock family and have produced a terrific Youtube video to explain the law.  It is far more effective than other attempts to explain the law. Continue reading “New anti-bullying campaign launched”

Video interviews with four safety professionals

Last week at the Safety In Action Trade Show I participated in a live web interview on safety.  The video of my interview is available below.  Many thanks to Digicast for making this and other OHS videos available.

Other video interviews are available with:

  • Dr Angelica Vecchio-Sadus- HSE Leader at CSIRO Process Science and Engineering.
  • Marilyn Hubner – Workplace Learning and Development Specialist at the National Safety Council of Australia
  • John Lacey, Video President IOSH & CEO Lincsafe

Kevin Jones

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