In the construction world, we’re often quick to reprimand our workers about safety violations. Such phrases as “Hey, put your helmet on!”, “Seriously, do you really think this is a good idea?” and “Get off that ladder now!” come to mind. All too seldom, do we say, “Thanks. You’re doing a great job in keeping the site safe!”
As you walk your work sites or wander the shop, it’s important to search out potential hazards and people who are not following what’s expected. However, don’t forget to recognize and acknowledge the workers who are doing their jobs right. When you recognize the power of thanking those who do well, their peers pay attention. That’s the reason why merit badges work.
Whether you’re a supervisor, foreman, or project manager, your job is to encourage safe behavior by motivating – not threatening – your workers as often as possible. Showing gratitude goes a long way in forming your crew and your friends. Take the time, and you’ll soon be surrounded by people who want to work for you. When you recognize this, you will understand the power of thanks.
Without trust, there’s little chance of success in any business – including yours. Your role is to help your workers stay out of trouble and eliminate acts and conditions on the job that can harm them. Whenever possible, it’s better to work with them, rather than acting as an obstacle.
Help your construction crews understand the hazards of the work they do and how to get them corrected. Establish a level of trust, and say “Thanks!” more often than “Stop!”
Remember, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.