Safety 2011 Blog


Safety 2011

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When we come here, we feel like we’re coming to a family reunion!

Del Tally, ASSE Fellow and past president

Addressing Pain Before it Becomes a Claim

Using data from a real world example with client Kimberly Clark, Trent Shuford, from InjuryFree Inc. (Session 766), talked about the societal factors that increase risk in the workplace, as well as the key areas of reducing risk: biophysics, ergonomics, education and awareness. With the goal of addressing pain before it becomes a claim, Shuford’s firm worked with Kimberly Clark to educate its workers to pay attention to pain and address it before it manifested into an injury. By addressing the four barriers, the firm was able to significantly, measurably reduce injuries.

A Safety Slogan From ASSE’s Nancy O’Toole:

"Check your shoes and your day will not slip away."

Thanks, Hytest. ASSE appreciates your support!

Insights From the Loss Control Executive Summit

To get the ear of the C-level executives, risk control professionals must demonstrate value to the business. This was the overarching theme of the Loss Control Executive Summit.

The panel included senior executives in loss control, Steven Hernandez, CSP, ARM, from Chubb & Sons; Christine Sullivan, CSP, ARM, from Lockton Cos.; Connie Bayne, CSP, from Liberty Mutual Insurance; Chris Iovino, CSP, ARM, from AON Risk Services; and Bill Boyd, CSP, CIH, CPE, from CNA.

The panelists talked about how their firms add value for their clients, offered some insight into the future of loss control, their perspectives on predictive modeling, how they see technology affecting loss control and what they look for when hiring staff.

While technical expertise is important, each panelist talked about additional key abilities when it comes to hiring staff. Iovino stressed that loss control professionals must understand the financial and business side. Bayne added that the ability to communicate well, and more importantly, the ability to effectively listen and understand business needs and drivers, is critical.

Hernandez pointed out that 15 years ago, candidates were assessed based on safety and scientific expertise. Today, the firm looks for people who understand business. Loss control or technical knowledge can be taught, but the business understanding is crucial.

Sullivan and Boyd pointed to the ability to develop relationships, and develop those relationships as professionals.

Thanks to ClickSafety for sponsoring this session!

Great Week for ASSE Foundation

ASSE Foundation had a banner week at Safety 2011. The Foundation raised $127,000 from the golf outing, silent auction and ASSE members making contributions to the profession. Continuing a popular tradition, chapters, regions and members donated $97,000 during the ASSE House of Delegates meeting alone!

NIOSH’s John Howard at Safety 2011.

NIOSH’s John Howard and OSHA’s David Michaels shared their insights and thoughts on the future of safety during the plenary session at Safety 2011 in Chicago.

A Safety Slogan From ASSE’s Nancy O’Toole:

"Ignoring a warning can cause much mourning."

With special thanks to Radar Speed Signs & Trailers

A Safety Slogan From ASSE’s Nancy O’Toole:

"Don’t be safety-blinded. Be safety-minded."

Thanks, DuPont Protection Technologies, for exhibiting at Safety 2011! See you in Denver for Safety 2012!

Words Are Heard, Actions Are Believed

Words can have a profound effect on safety—particularly when fault or blame are the default setting for safety. Words also greatly affect an SH&E professional’s credibility—especially when something that can’t or won’t be done is promised. These problems lead to a safety culture based on negative management techniques and avoidance, none of which build ownership or engage employees.

So, what can you do to develop a positive safety culture? That was the focus of “Actions Speak Louder Than Words: How to Create a Positive Safety Process.” According to presenter Chris Goulart of RCI Safety, SH&E professionals need to understand the motivations that drive actions; make safety personal; remove cultural barriers and organizational norms that prevent safe work actions; have credibility by reinforcing safe work habits whenever possible; focus on the positive; and coach instead of discipline. “To get employees to own safety, we have to create an environment where they are motivated to work safely,” he said.

It’s also important to emphasize action and performance, not outcomes. “Focus on working toward achievement, not the avoidance of failure.”

A Safety Slogan From ASSE’s Nancy O’Toole:

"Falling objects can be brutal if you don’t protect your noodle."

Thanks, Honeywell Safety Products, for exhibiting at Safety 2011!

Poster Session Winners

ASSE recently announced the winners of the poster sessions at Safety 2011.

"Measuring Ambient Air Concentrations in a Research and Development (R&D) Clean Room Environment." The project was conducted by Samantha Connell, Burton Ogle, Ph.D., CIH, CSP; Tracy Zontek, Ph.D., CIH, CSP, all of Western Carolina University; and Scott Hollenbeck, CIH, and John Jankovic, CIH, of Oak Ridge National Laboratory

"A Study of NIOSH Highway Work Zones Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) Program Based on Gibb-Haslam Model of Accident Causation," which was conducted by Hossein Hosseini Tabar and Michael Behm, Eastern Carolina University

"NIOSH Development of a Multi-Functional Guardrail System," by E.A. McKenzie Jr„ Thomas Bobick and Douglas Cantis, all of NIOSH.

Avoiding Death By PowerPoint

In his presentation, Bag of Tricks: Presentation Design, Don Weatherbee of Reichhold Inc., shared guidelines and tips for creating presentations that engage people—not put them to sleep.

Weatherbee outlined four key elements of any presentation—speaker, audience, location and “the deck” (the “slides”); examined delivery platforms; and highlighted three types of training—topic-based, task-based and story-based.

One thing any trainer must remember, Weatherbee said, is that PowerPoint is not Word. “Think of PowerPoint as a billboard,” he said. That means don’t overload slides with too much information and remember that images speak louder than words.

At the end of the fast-moving session, Weatherbee asked the audience to guess how many slides had been in his presentation. Guesses ranged from 45 to 90. The actual number was 200—but it certainly didn’t feel like it. Best of all, Weatherbee didn’t use one bullet point.

You can view his presentation at

Thanks to ASSE’s Training and Communication Branch of the RM/I Practice Specialty for sponsoring this session!

A Safety Slogan From ASSE’s Nancy O’Toole:

"Safety fits like a glove. Try one on." (or) "No Glove, No Safety!"

With special thanks to Magid Glove & Safety

Sponsor Spotlight: LJB Inc.

Associate Sponsor

Corporate Profile: LJB ( focuses on reducing risk for workers at heights. The company provided fall protection program management, risk assessments, abatement design and commissioning services. LJB also delivers fall protection training in both in-class and online formats.

LJB is independence from equipment manufacturers and its involvement on the ANSI Z359 Fall Protection Committee allows staff to be educated but unbiased when evaluating and designing fall protection solutions. In addition, LJB staff of dually registered P.E.s and CSPs help ensure that unique structural and safety issues are addressed.

To learn more, contact Thom Kramer, P.E., CSP, at (937) 259-5120;

Does Loss Control Contribute to Your Company’s Bottom Line?

I am often asked: How does loss control make a valuable contribution to the company? That depends on how the organization utilizes loss control and the characteristics of professionals who are part of the team.

If loss control is used primarily as an inspection service that raises objections which are seen as roadblocks to writing new business, then the ultimate financial results will reflect that attitude. Loss control will be ignored as much as the organization will allow, and many poor risks will be placed on the books.

In turn, if loss control is used as a marketing tool, mainly focused on pushing services to promote the sale of insurance, but not focused on addressing loss exposure issues, the same thing will ultimately happen.

Instead, organizations should seek an integrated model that considers loss control an internal partner, a vital part of the insurance decision process, and an important value-added service to the client. Loss control should be at the table as a part of the underwriting and account management process; an equal partner with claims and underwriting in determining client insurability, acquisition and retention.

This integrated model offers a way to measure the contributions loss control is making to the bottom line. First, we can gather feedback from internal and external customers who can speak specifically about how loss control brought value to the business relationship, which is tied to income generated or expenses saved.

We can also track client performance based on their time with us. For instance, we may be able to show that the loss performance of longer-term clients is several points better than newer clients, indicating the impact of services provided.

Finally (and this is an evolving process at Chubb), we have developed better tools to track the clients we interact with versus the clients we do not. Our initial observations are that the clients we interact with more have better long-term performance than those with whom we interact less.

However, bottom-line success loss control professionals to be solution developers and problem solvers. They should be a reason a client cites for either selecting an insurance provider or staying with that provider when it’s time to renew.

Loss control professionals should be open to robust debate and conversation around new ideas and potential solutions. In fact, the best loss control professionals and the most successful are those who embrace change and find ways to be a part of it. Loss control professionals who embody these qualities are the ones that can delight the customer and make a measurable and positive contribution to the company.

What’s your company’s approach to loss control?

—Contributed by Steve Hernandez, senior vice president and worldwide loss control manager for the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies

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