Building Inclusive Workplaces.
Struggling to realise your DEIB strategy?
Most people are drawn to the work they do and the industry they are in for the very best of reasons. I was reminded of this when taking one of our construction clients through a Why Discovery conversation. It struck me that most people work in their industry for deeply personal reasons.
The client told me they joined their industry to improve other peoples’ lives. Bringing the infrastructures that contribute to society’s development, with bridges, tunnels and buildings. The presence of these physical structures makes the world a better place and creates a more pleasant experience for everyone in their day to day lives.
Whether in energy, mining, manufacturing or any sector, this cause or belief, their Higher Purpose, contributes to others and is real for people, even if it is not fully visible or expressed.
In many industries, people still get hurt in the course of their work. When this happens, it puts pressure on those who believe in the purpose of the business and recognises the pain caused by these events.
When we hit a plateau in performance improvements within safety and productivity, the only real option is to find a way to move forward that is outside the current paradigm, the very thinking that holds the current circumstances in place.
The best way to do this is to unpack some of the stories or assumptions that are deeply entrenched in our collective belief systems. The three most common assumptions are:
To confront these assumptions requires concerted and committed energy, to overcome the inevitable moving back to the current ways of thinking.
There is a place we find a huge amount of energy, a resource that unleashes people to move beyond the current dilemmas. That place is the very reason we joined the industry, to exist and contribute to the world in the way that we do.
When we tap into our Higher Purpose, we release energy that is already there and engage everyone in creating a new future, to fulfil on the company’s Higher Purpose.
This happens when we shift the context for safety from being the absence of harm to the presence of people being at their best. The people we support feel a growing sense of well-being, high engagement and sense of contribution in the work they are doing.
People become the solution to safety as they experience being connected to the company’s purpose, rather than needing to control people’s behaviour with rules and procedures. These people contribute to safety and performance because they want to and they have something useful to give.
We call this approach Why-Based Safety. It brings together the latest safety research with cutting-edge ideas in human and organisational development, this generates breakthroughs in both safety and productivity.