TitleValues-in-action that support safe production.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsJohnston, D, Pagell, M, Veltri, A, Klassen, R
JournalJ Safety Res
Date Published02/2020

INTRODUCTION: Safe production is a sustainable approach to managing an organization's operations that considers the interests of both management and workers as salient stakeholders in a productive and safe workplace. A supportive culture enacts values versus only espousing them. These values-in-action are beliefs shared by both management and workers that align what should happen in performing organizational routines to be safe and be productive with what actually is done. However, the operations and safety management literature provides little guidance on which values-in-action are most important to safe production and how they work together to create a supportive culture.

METHOD: The researchers conducted exploratory case studies in 10 manufacturing plants of 9 firms. The researchers compared plant managers' top-down perspectives on safety in the performance of work and workers' bottom-up experiences of the safety climate and their rates of injury on the job. Each case study used data collected from interviewing multiple managers, the administration of a climate survey to workers and the examination of the plant's injury rates over time as reported to its third party health and safety insurer.

RESULTS: The researchers found that plants with four values-in-action -a commitment to safety, discipline, prevention and participation-were capable of safe production, while plants without those values were neither safe nor productive. Where culture and climate aligned lower rates of injury were experienced.

DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: The four value-in-actions must all be present and work together in a self-reinforcing manner to engage workers and managers in achieving safe production. Practical application: Managers of both operations and safety functions do impact safety outcomes such as reducing injuries by creating a participatory environment that encourage learning that improves both safety and production routines.

Alternate JournalJ Safety Res
PubMed ID32199580