There are many situations where we, as Safety Managers, have to talk to management. Talking to management might mean just to our boss or maybe it is the executive committee or a board of directors. This could be to give them an update on the safety program, your progress, or to ask for approval for a project or initiative. There are little things to remember that can put you at ease during these conversations and greatly improve the outcome.
As Safety Managers, we need to continually focus on building relationships; with employees, our co-workers, the management team and even the executive team. Safety is more successful with there is a strong relationship between the management team and the safety department.
Building Strong Relationships
To build a strong relationship, it needs to start with being there for others, understanding their needs, and offering to help them. Compliment others, ask questions and listen actively. Always be on the lookout for how you can make their life easier.
The goals of a safety manager are very different than the goals of a department manager, head of the company, or executive. You can’t try to influence them by expressing your goals. The focus needs to be on how safe work practice, program, or initiative help them meet their goals.
On this week’s episode, we discuss why your approach to management needs to be crafted differently depending on who you are talking to. We also review a few changes that help you build stronger relationships. And, I go down a psychology rabbit hole and tell you how appearance and language affect how your message is received.
Highlights From This Episode:
- Where safety should report in the organizational chart
- Building relationships with the management team
- Why it is important to talk to management and the different scenarios where we have to
- Every interaction may call for a different approach
- Mirroring their style – giving them information they way they like to receive it
- Understanding their goals and crafting your message to their goals
- Dressing the part
- How your language and words affect the reception of your message
- Handling meeting with multiple people and multiple styles
- Always be building relationship
- Project Implicit – Harvard Implicit bias test
- Dale Carnegie: How to Win Friends and Influence People (affiliate)
Now It’s Your Turn
I would love to know what you think about this week’s show. Please leave a comment below and include a situation where you had to talk to management and you weren’t really comfortable; do you think any of these tips may have helped?
Hi, I'm Brye (rhymes with sky)! I am a self-proclaimed safety geek with two decades of general industry safety experience. Specializing in bringing safety programs to a world-class level and building a safety culture, I have trained and coached many safety managers, just like you, on how to effectively manage workplace safety in the real world. I would love to help you too.