Safety is a core component of Nucor Grating’s mission.
Our commitment to safety revolves around a very simple concept. We believe that our people are the most important asset our company has. Keeping those people safe isn’t just a priority for us, it’s a non-negotiable.
At Nucor, we know that becoming the world’s leading grating manufacturer is an unattainable goal without a focus on the safety of our operations, our processes, and on our products themselves. It’s our unrelenting responsibility to take care of each and every member of our team both at work and at home. Our success depends on the continued successes of our people.
Many companies say, “Safety is our priority.” That might seem like a surprisingly straightforward directive, but we still see plenty of people making the kind of decisions that lead to injuries. Priorities can change on a moment’s notice which is why it’s imperative safety be treated as fundamental, not just as a priority.
Industrial safety has no inertia. That means if you consider safety to be a ball rolling along a flat surface without anything pushing it along, that ball will eventually stop rolling. If our number one value is safety – and it is – we need to be upholding it each and every day. There is a marked difference between “staying safe” and in being safe on purpose. It’s our belief that we always need to know exactly how to achieve optimum safety in the workplace in order to keep that ball rolling.
Why Does Safety Matter?
Within any commercial industry, you’ll find lots of justifications for a commitment (or a recommitment) to safety. “Safety” has become a buzzword of late. It’s shorthand for a positive company culture, a good place to work, and a company that cares about its people.
You can read endlessly about the cost benefit analysis of safety in the workplace. Of how reducing injuries in the workplace can significantly reduce costs that would otherwise cripple business operations. There’s certainly no shortage of information about how the safest workers are the most productive workers. Studies have proven that people who feel safe in the workplace perform better work and more of it than those who don’t.
Ultimately, Nucor’s stance is that a focus on safety should never be treated as a line item. It’s not a one-off and it’s not something you can achieve in an hour-long, all-hands-on-deck training session.
An ongoing commitment to workplace safety is just the right thing to do. Period.
The Many Decisions That Add Up to Safety
At Nucor Grating we believe that a culture of safety actually equates to a culture of responsible decision making. Safety is a nebulous concept, and although there are unsafe situations and unsafe actions, the idea of safety is really borne from all the many decisions people make every second of every day. Safety is cumulative.
Google says that the average adult makes somewhere around 35,000 somewhat-conscious decisions per day. These decisions can be as overt as deciding what kind of jelly to put on our toast in the morning and as subtle as the subconscious decision to “forget” to wear a visor at work. We know that even if our people are making safe decisions 99% of the time, that means they’re still leaving themselves open to the possibility of something going wrong for a significant portion of their working life.
So, how do we drive our teams to make the right decisions? The process is a marathon, not a sprint. A culture of safety is deeply ingrained into the Nucor ethos and it’s something none of our employees for granted. If they do, they ultimately prove not to be a fit for the Nucor team. The involvement of every teammate is an absolute necessity if safety is to remainvalue.
Ensuring all of our programs are in place and operating effectively is a big piece of the puzzle. Having each aspect of each safety plan running simultaneously is also important for reducing hazards, promoting safe behaviors, and maintaining a systematic approach. Focusing on one area of a safety plan is a surefire way to reduce injuries, but a holistic consideration of all safety programs is the best way to create a culture of zero tolerance.
These well-defined programs support each team’s decision-making process on a yearly, daily, and even hourly basis. If the decisions we make (and particularly the decisions we make again and again) amount to our Safety Culture, what are our decisions saying about us? The two questions we find most valuable to ask are:
What do we tolerate?
What do we demonstrate?
These simple but powerful distillations of thought ultimately serve as the baseline for our processes, which are always being improved. We find that illustrating the effects of the choices we’re making is incredibly useful for moving forward with a safer, more productive way of doing things.
The best safety practices in the world don’t amount to much if they’re one-off; safety has to be embedded into the actual processes our team uses to do their jobs. In the end, our goal is to streamline the path to a safer, more responsible workplace for our employees.
Nucor Grating is Doing Things Differently
Why is safety so important to us? We all come to work every day to earn a wage for ourselves and to provide for our families. What is work if not a tool to help us produce something useful, and also to help us enjoy our lives?
By not making sure safety is the paramount consideration at the jobsite each day, we jeopardize that goal. If our people are our most valuable asset, it is absolutely in our best interest to make sure they leave as good – if not better – than they came into work.
We believe it’s the responsibility of every single teammate to continuously ensure the safety of both themselves and the people around them. It’s just the Nucor Grating way and it is absolutely the most important thing we do.
Nucor Grating’s obsessive commitment to safety reflects
in the quality of our products.
To learn more about our company culture or to speak to a products expert at Nucor, contact us today.