Your Monthly Check-Up: June is National Safety Month

Safety and wellness go hand-in-hand, especially when it comes to the workplace. This year, the National Safety Council (NSC) is celebrating 100 years of safety.

Each June, the NSC encourages organizations to get involved with National Safety Month, an annual observance to educate and influence behaviors surrounding the leading causes of preventable injuries.

This year’s theme is “Safety Starts with Me.” According to the NSC website, “Successful organizations engage everyone in safety and create a culture where people feel a personal responsibility not only for their own safety, but for that of their coworkers, family and friends. While leadership from the top is important, creating a culture where there is a sense of ownership of safety by all makes everyone in the organization a safety leader.”

Each week in June introduces a new sub-theme under this banner of “Safety Starts with Me”:

Week 1: Preventing Slips, Trips and Falls
Week 2: Employee Wellness
Week 3: Emergency Preparedness
Week 4: Ergonomics

Since the weather is heating up and more people are spending time outdoors, the NSC wants everyone to be extra caution when it comes to summer safety and driving safety, as well. Personal Best suggests taking a course in basic lifesaving procedures and stay aware of weather and water conditions if you spend a lot of time at the ocean during the summer – or anytime.

According to, “Injuries are a leading cause of disability for people of all ages, and the leading cause of death for Americans ages one to 44. When people practice safe behaviors, they can help prevent injuries – and even death.”

We all know that accidents happen, but playing it safe and employing best practices both on the job and at home are steps in the right direction of injury prevention.

Personal Best’s 2013 wellness calendar sums it up best: “When we are without injury, we are, in one sense, well. When we are calm, we tend to make choices that keep us safe. Avoid shortcuts and take time to do the job right, use the right tools and take precautions. Slow down if you’re moving too fast.”

What else can we do to make sure we’re keeping ourselves and each other safe at work and at home?

Read More

Superstorm Sandy, Safety Incentives and Spot Recognition

Hurricane Sandy, the superstorm that pummeled the Northeast late last October, left an incredible wake of destruction in its path. From massive power outages to fires to flattened buildings, Sandy showed no mercy – but she did create a perfect opportunity for local safety and recovery professionals and emergency response teams to shine.

Incentive Magazine covers this topic in its January/February 2013 issue. “A Safe Recovery” by Andrea Doyle talks about how safety incentives played an important role in East Coast efforts to rebuild after Sandy. Hinda relationship manager Linda Wodele offered some insight on the importance of safety incentives, both with regard to Sandy and in other facets.

“The most successful safety incentive programs have successful safety habits at their core,” she says. “People are creatures of habit and fall back on what they know. If their habits are strong, they will hold up in a crisis situation such as Hurricane Sandy and the groundwork for working safely will be in place.

“We have seen an uptick of at least 15 to 20 percent in safety incentives in the last year,” she continues. “[Hinda’s] safety solutions take a behavioral approach to remind people to do the right thing on a daily basis.”

Reinforcing behavior is a great way to spread a culture of safety and instill safe habits within employees’ daily lives. An effective method for reinforcing behavior is with spot recognition – one example of which is Hinda’s “Scratch and Win” cards, which are pre-loaded with points that can be redeemed for merchandise.

“These types of awards are particularly popular as they encourage companies to take a preventative, day-to-day approach to safety,” Wodele says.

Michael Kelleher, Director of Sales and Operations for Kelleher Enterprises (Ann Arbor, MI), and a partner of Hinda, agrees and confirms the importance of having a culture of safety in place.

“The firms that have successful safety programs in place will be at an advantage because their employees will have safety protocol engrained in their daily work,” he says. “Safety incentive programs can effectively complement the training and communication programs that firms use to influence the behaviors of their employees while on the job.”

What does your company do to ensure a culture of safety among its employees? Does your company recognize its employees for following a high standard of safety protocol? Talk to Hinda if you’d like to learn more about how we can help establish a safety incentives program at your company, and read more about this topic here.

Read More

Employee Spotlight: Linda Wodele

Hinda Relationship Manager Linda Wodele has been in the incentive business for 25 years and counting, dabbling in safety for most of that time. Is she a safety program specialist? She would disagree. "My specialty is employee programs," she says. "However, it eventually all comes around again. Safety incentive programs are one of our oldest programs."
Read More

Incremental Rewards: Modifying Behavior With Scratch & Win

Safety incentive programs are more effective when the focus is more on modifying and influencing behavior than simply rewarding results. Instead of using large awards that only one person has an opportunity to win, smaller rewards that recognize random acts of safety tend to have a stronger positive effect. If a manager sees one of their workers doing something right in the name of safety, how could they reward that effort on the spot?
Read More