Let Me Know
Supervisors may only know what you need if you tell them
By Michael Schroeder Hubert, CLAC Training Manitoba Manager
I do most of the grocery shopping for my family. Since I do the cooking, I generally know what we need.
But recently, both of my kids, at different times, told me that we didn’t have this or that. It just wasn’t on my radar that we were out of what they were asking for.
I thanked my kids for telling me, and put the items on my mental grocery list.
At work, when I’m running training sessions, I’ll occasionally have a superintendent in a session with their workers. One aspect of safety training is making sure that everyone knows who is responsible for what, and supervisors carry a lot of responsibility for making sure that work can be done safely.
When I identify that legislation requires that supervisors ensure that workers have the correct safety equipment to do the job, and the knowledge on how to do the job safely, the supervisors that I’ve had in class assure their workers that they are looking out for them.
It’s encouraging to hear supervisors tell their workers that being able to work safely is important. As a worker, its good to know that your safety is valued.
On site, supervisors have lots going on, and their attention can get pulled in many different directions. They may miss hazards that we as workers see as we try to complete our tasks.
If you don’t have the equipment to manage the hazard or knowledge of how to control it, you need to stop and ask your supervisor to help resolve the situation. Your safety depends on you having what you need.
But supervisors may only know what you need if you tell them.
This conversation shouldn’t be something to avoid or something to be afraid of. Supervisors want you to be able to do your job safely. And if you can’t do you job safely, there are potential consequences for supervisors if you get hurt.
It’s in everyone’s interest to make sure that you can work safely. It should be as easy as asking for the cereal to be restocked. Except the consequences of not having the conversation are way more important—your life may depend on it.