This paper will focus on how to emphasize the importance of safety-based on the needs of the audience. Safety professionals who use traditional media to interact may have to reassess the personal/professional driver of their audiences to align their safety and health message with the evolution of communication. While technology has contributed useful methods of delivering workplace safety data, new challenges arise in maintaining effective workplace communications specific to safety and health. New strategies to develop safety and health communications target optimizing communication by increasing conversation amongst top management and line employees.
In the workplace, the first objective to effectively communicate safety is to engage the audience. In the workplace, mass communication can be efficiently through a website, share point, personal email, text message or even a safety stand-down; however, delivering the content does not mean the message was received. Individuals that do not feel connected to the topic(s) or material will ignore, disengage, or simply ‘go with the flow’ to satisfy a safety and health objective.
Most individuals relate best to information that could results in a direct benefit. Drivers that influence management may be different than the interests of the line workers. For a safety professional to communicate one message that can reach all, researching common themes of each workgroup and its knowledge as it relates to each topic can assist in developing a plan of action. This action plan must work to meet a clearly defined objective you want to reach with the audience. Safety communications generally target to inform, excite, and/or persuade the audience to engage in a safety and health protocol.
The best informative communications are concise, factual, and unbiased. With regard to safety communications, the basis of this type of communication has traditionally been to advise about a best practice, rule, or regulation. This approach shifted during the information age.