A web site designer recently posted on his blog that “you can’t use icing on your website.” He made the comparison between baking and repairing poorly made holiday cookies and customers who are in a rush to see results by taking short cuts and substituting “easy” for “disciplined” In short, they don’t follow the tried and true recipe, and end up paying for it by covering up their less than perfect results.
When the cookies look bad because the recipe wasn’t followed precisely (or some baking technique was poorly handled), people cover over the imperfections with icing and add sprinkles to make the cookie “look good” so it will get eaten by friends and relatives at parties.
In the safety world, we can’t take shortcuts and expect “great” results. However, it may be tempting to take a program that didn’t “turn out” as good as we expected and doctor it up by covering the imperfections with icing and sprinkles. After all, it’s embarrassing to explain to the boss that we could have done better with the budget and responsibility that was entrusted to us. On the other hand, the disciplined safety manager would ask himself/herself; “Can I really afford to cover over a flawed program, or do I really need to start a fresh batch of dough and do it right?”
In the kitchen, it’s just cookies. In the safety world, it’s peoples’ well being and livelihood on the line. That’s why we have this quote from an anonymous safety manager; “Asking me to overlook a simple safety violation would be asking me to compromise my entire attitude toward the value of your life”
If you want to bake great cookies, you’ve got to follow the recipe. You can use modern utensils to speed up the process, but you can’t ignore what works, either. A “zip-o-matic” rarely actually produces a result as good as seen on the TV infomercial.
In safety, it’s the same thing. Disciplined follow through may not be glitzy, but we have a responsibility to “get it right” or “start over until we do”. People are worth the investment of energy and shouldn’t be short changed by covering over poor programs with excuses.
Unfortunately, there are vendors who put sales and profit above the discipline of “doing it right” — they take shortcuts and liberties with their program and then they make excuses later (glopping on the icing to cover up the cracks). We’ve helped a lot of clients make the switch from those types of programs to our own — these clients were wise enough to “throw out the bad batch” and start fresh — once they recognized that pretty looking, but badly made cookies just don’t cut it.
If you’re looking for great results from your driver safety program, give us a call. SafetyFirst – Because results count for more than promises, and there’s no subsitute for doing it right the first time.