June 5, 2019

Insights: Leading the conversation on health and safety

Published on NZBusiness

29 May 2019

With ambitious health and safety targets, there’s a lot of work to do and change needs to be driven by business and industry leaders. 

WorkSafe New Zealand has now released the first four of its Insights videos, designed to get business leaders talking about health and safety.

WorkSafe is striving to bring health and safety performance in New Zealand to a world-class standard.

With ambitious targets including a 25 percent reduction in work-related fatalities and injuries by 2022; zero catastrophic events; and a 50 percent reduction in asbestos disease by 2040, there’s a lot of work to do, and change needs to be driven by our business and industry leaders.

Presented by WorkSafe’s chief executive Nicole Rosie, the purpose of these webinars is to help leaders realise that health and safety is mainstream and should be as much a part of any business discussion as financial risk or commodity risk might be.

Business leaders need to have as much emphasis on health and safety practice as they do on other elements of their operations.

The second purpose of the webinars is to get people to understand that health and safety is not an extra and to showcase leaders who put health and safety at the centre of everything they do.

The webinars highlight that health and safety is about people who are highly engaged with their team, because they care. And while only high engagement can build trust, first you must care for people. It’s about understanding the challenges they face and working with them.

The first four videos feature:

• New Zealand Trade and Enterprise’s Peter Chrisp discussing the importance leadership plays in health and safety. Peter provides some real-world examples on ways businesses, and business leaders, can make positive changes to the way they do health and safety.

• Mai Chen from the Superdiversity Centre highlights the challenges presented by New Zealand’s increasingly diverse workforce, and what leaders can do to meet them. Mai talks about the importance of getting to know your workers and forming an understanding of their backgrounds. She also explains how cultural differences can lead to situations where migrants are placed in higher risk situations.

• Quinton Hall from Ngāi Tahu Tourism explains how his company organisation brings a positive health and safety culture to life in one of the fastest growing areas of productivity for New Zealand – adventure tourism. He talks about the principles of Manaakitanga (kindness), rangatiratanga (leadership) and whanaungatanga (family) and how Ngāi Tahu Tourism brings health and safety culture to life in a way that is meaningful to its business.

• Adrian Orr from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand provides his views on the shift New Zealand needs to make to a long-term way of thinking. Adrian addresses the importance of business managers, owners and investors being more involved with the day-to-day management of the business, than just its bottom line.

Keep an eye out on WorkSafe’s website and social media channels for the next in the series of videos coming out soon.

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