A slips and trips toolbox talk: Talk the talk AND walk the walk

TED talks are motivational and interesting talks from industry leaders and well-known people that take place around the world. From Bill Clinton to the founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, inspirational people such as these impart their knowledge and experiences. Over one billion people have viewed TED talks. TED focuses on ‘ideas worth spreading’ and are designed to share advice with people in various industries.

Share Your Ideas

Sharing ideas with a well-planned talk, like with TED talks, is a great way to improve your own business. Ideas can even involve topics that focus on the health and safety standards within your organisation.

Improving your safety standards by sharing good ideas

One of the ways to improve the standard of health and safety in the workplace is by using toolbox talks to share ideas. And remember improve standards can make the workplace safer and reduce the risk of personal injury claims.

But what are toolbox talks?

A toolbox talk is a brief safety talk or meeting about a specific subject. Employers organise these at the beginning of the day and cover a variety of short safety topics to teach or refresh staff. Subjects regarding health and safety range from behavior safety, chemical safety and electrical safety are discussed to name but a few!

How do toolbox talks work?

These talks can be carried out in a number of different ways. They are generally short. It is advisable that they take the form of an interactive discussion. There’s no need for the employer to do all the talking! Employee contributions are just as beneficial and they can provide valuable insights into safety in the workplace.

Remember – it’s all about staying safe at work! But just like TED talks, be sure to engage with your audience! You don’t want anyone nodding off! Use images, videos or anything else you can think of. And make sure to stay on topic with your chosen subject!

Toolbox talks are a form of training and good training is necessary to ensure a safe and healthy work environment for everyone. It increases awareness and eliminates potential dangers. Attendance should be recorded to keep track of who still needs to be training in the future. Ideally, these talks should be done on a regular basis. All topics can help prevent slips, trips and other accidents happening in the workplace.

The benefits of toolbox talks:

  • They raise awareness of safety issues
  • They reinforce important safety messages
  • They discuss precautions that need to be put in place
  • They reduce the risk of injuries
  • They reduce the risk of people claiming for compensation

How do you organise a toolbox talk?

Here is a checklist that can be used as a guide to help employers carry out a toolbox talk:

Pre-meeting ensure that:

  • The topic relates to the workplace
  • You know the company regulations surrounding it
  • You’ve noted any previous accidents in relation to it
  • You’ve prepared copies of a safety advice sheet

During the meeting:

  • Discuss previous accidents that have occurred
  • Discuss any current safety problems
  • Discuss what everyone can do to solve these problems
  • Ask if anyone has any experience of these problems
  • Discuss the procedures the company has around the particular topic

After the meeting carry out the following two steps:

  • Make sure everyone has understood the topic
  • Hand out copies of the safety advice sheet

This is a general guide and can be adapted to suit the topic and the workplace. Remember, toolbox talks can be enjoyable as well as practical. Create them, share them and above all make the most of them!