Being Client-focused in the Construction Industry

Have you ever heard the term client-focused? For employees who are not in a management role they may not give much attention to the term “client-focused”, but in the construction industry every employee should consider the importance of being client-focused.

What Does Being Client-focused Mean?

Being client-focused means keeping the client’s (or project owner’s) best interests in mind when completing your work. In the construction industry, the general contractor or project owner almost always has a high regard for safety for all subcontracted employees on their worksite followed by productivity. If a worker is client-focused then keeping the client’s best interests in mind would mean they are approaching their work both safely and efficiently as best as they possibly can.

Examples of Being Client-focused

  • Following all safe work practices and company specific safety procedures when completing work.
  • Approaching work with forethought and keeping in mind any possible negative impacts that could result from poorly executed work.
  • Ultimately treating how you approach your work as if you were the one who owned the end outcomes – good and bad outcomes.

Being Client Focused Construction IndustryBeing Client-focused is Important for All Employees

By completing work from a client-focused standpoint, you ensure you are representing your company well which often leads to additional work from the same client. It also leads to earning work with other companies who are involved in the project. Earning more work ensures all employees will continue to have jobs even after that specific project ends.

Approaching work in this manner not only means that there are less injuries and property damage incidents on the job as a whole, but each individual worker also can reap the benefits of additional work.

Hand Injury and Prevention Safety Talk

We use our hands for do every task we do at work and because of this they are commonly injured on the job. Keeping our hands and fingers out of harm’s way at work is critical. A serious injury to an individual’s hands or fingers results in a huge negative impact on their ability to work and overall quality of life. While gloves are the most common form of PPE found in the workplace, hand injuries are still the second leading type of injury on the job.

Hand Injury Statistics 

  • There are 110,000 lost time cases due to hand injuries annually.
  • 1 million workers are treated in an ER for hand injuries annually.
  • 70% of workers who experienced a hand injury were not wearing gloves.
  • Another 30% of victims had gloves on, but they were damaged or inadequate for the work task.

Three Common Types of Hand Injuries

  1. Lacerations are the most common type of hand injuries. Lacerations are due to sharp objects or tools. Often hand injury and preventioninadequate gloves are used during an activity that involves a sharp tool. A glove with Kevlar is effective in protecting the hand against a cutting or slicing motion. A straight stab motion can still easily penetrate these gloves. Caution needs to be used when using any tool that can easily penetrate the skin.
  2. Crush injuries are usually due to employees placing their hands in the line of fire between two objects or in a rotating piece of equipment. 
  3. Fractures occur when there is a sudden blow to the bones in the fingers or hands. Motor vehicle accidents often cause fractures to the hands. Another common cause of fractures is an individual extending out their hands to catch themselves from a fall.

Safe Work Practices

  • Use tools to remove your hands from the line of fire when doing a work task that could result injury to your hands or fingers. Using tools such as push sticks when using a table saw is an example that removes your hands from the line of fire.
  • Avoid using fixed open blade knives. There are safety knives that limit the length of the blade exposed. They also have a safety feature that retracts the blade when pressure is let off the handle or switch that controls the blade.
  • Never put your hand in an area where you cannot see it.
  • Always wear the proper gloves for whatever work task you are doing. Understand the limitations of your gloves and what work tasks they are appropriate for.
  • Never work on an energized piece of equipment. Lock and tag out the equipment to ensure there will not be unintentional start up while you are working on the equipment.

Five Reasons to Work Safe Today

take safety homeFive Reasons to Work Safe Today (Safety Talk)

We all have different reasons for why we choose to do certain things and why we may not choose to do others. When it comes to working safely we should all want to choose to make the right decision. We all are different in the way we think, but there are many common reasons why we should choose to work safe. No matter what your motivator may be keep these five reasons in mind as to why we should all strive to should work safe.

Five Reasons to Work Safe

  1. Your health. Obviously your health and well-being should be the biggest motivator as to why you should choose to work safe. Once we lose our health or impact it severely, it may never be the same. It is important to really think about how a severe injury would change the rest of your life.
  2. Providing for your family. Your family depends on your ability to earn an income. When you are injured or ill you can lose that ability very quickly. Even if it is only for a short time the financial and emotional effects on your family can be drastic.
  3. Your reputation. While productive employees are still very much rewarded at many companies, working safely is often recognized right along with production. Your reputation at work not only affects you in your current position, but it also can affect getting a future promotion at your company or opportunities at other companies. No one wants to reward a risk taker or put them in a position of power. If it is known that you are a worker that cuts corners or does not work safely it could make all the difference in whether or not you get the chance at a better opportunity.
  4. Your coworkers. Making the choice to take a shortcutcan not only harm yourself, but you can also harm a fellow coworker. Everyone’s safety on the job depends on not only on their own choices but the choices of all the workers there.
  5. Your company. Whether you love the company you work for or not, the job they provide you with pays your bills. Working safely allows business to continue thus providing the opportunity for you to continue to pay your bills as well as your fellow coworkers to do the same.

Achieving Safety Goals

Achieving Safety Goals Safety Talk

Any company that focuses on improving workplace safety aims to get their employees home in the same health they came into work or better every single day. For many companies there is often a larger expressed goal attached to this effort. Often the goal for many worksites or companies as a whole is to make it an entire year without any injuries. For other companies it may just be no lost time injuries in a year. Despite what the goal is or the duration set, one thing is for certain- it takes focused effort every single day to achieve it.

Safety Goals Set by Companies

Safety records are tracked, days since last injury counters loom over employees’ heads, and safety lunches are held quarterly to celebrate employee efforts in working safely. While these tools may be good reminders for a workforce that there is a goal set and there is progress being made, the honest truth is that it takes dedication by every single person on that team over a long period of time to achieve the larger goal. The enormity of these safety related goals can overwhelm even the most optimistic employee.

achieving safety goals toolbox talkThe Only Way to Achieve a Big Safety Goal is One Task at a Time

After huge goals are set by companies regarding workplace safety, it is up everyone’s willingness to embrace that it is possible and take action towards meeting the goal. The thought alone of making it a whole year without injury automatically shuts down many individuals from even wanting to put a care towards attempting to achieve it. To reduce the enormity of the goal, concrete actions need to be lined out every day to focus on preventing injuries one task at a time.

The best way to achieve a huge goal is to take small steps towards it every single day. For safety goals it means doing one step, one work task, one safeguard, the right way each time it needs completed. Effort cannot be applied directly to the overall abstract goal that may be a year or two away. Effort can be applied by each individual to take action in the task they are doing that minute to complete it in the safe and correct manner.