Overreliance on Antecedents: Do Policies, Memos, and Safety Signage Work?

You can walk into any work environment where safety is a major concern and see the signs on the wall, signs like “Protective Gear Must be Worn At All Times.” But why is it, that often times, employees tend to dismiss these warnings and work unprotected? Safety signage, policies, memos and, yes, even training are considered antecedents.  They only prompt behavior. To effectively build a proactive and safe work environment, you must have effective consequences in place to drive consistently safe behavior. In this latest video blog, Judy Agnew, co-author of Safe by Accident?, discusses the natural tendencies toward using antecedents to manage safe behavior and what managers should do differently to create a consistent and safe work environment.

Posted by Judy Agnew, Ph.D.

As senior vice president of safety solutions, Judy spends her time helping clients create sustainable safety cultures. She also helps clients with strategy execution beyond safety, and general management and leadership improvement across cultural and generational differences.