Hypercompliance May be Damaging Your Safety Culture and Your Performance
Workplaces that take a hard line when enforcing ‘safety absolutes’ may be undermining worker safety. That’s the central premise of author, teacher and educator Dave Rebbitt’s article Hypercompliance: Too Much of a Good Thing?
In this episode, Dave Rebbitt and I discuss things to be mindful about when this approach erodes the fundamental trust and support workers have for health and safety systems. First, Dave walks us down the path that led to the Hypercompliance phenomenon. We chat about the reality that unintended consequences can arise from good ideas and good faith assumptions about how the workplace operates.
Through the podcast, Dave covers the influence of major thinkers and writers that have have influenced workplaces since the early 1900’s. We also chat about more contemporary safety management activities like auditing, behaviour-based safety and a systems approaches. Finally, we unpack the culture of ‘Zero’, the features of Hypercompliance and the significant downside of taking no prisoners when it comes to enforcement of safety rules.
Dave Rebbitt is president and owner of Rarebit Consulting, a safety and management consulting firm. Dave has worked in senior roles with a variety of companies in the energy, construction, mining industries and also with Canada’s Department of National Defense. An author, commentator and teacher, Dave earned an M.B.A. from Athabasca University and is an instructor for the University of Alberta’s OHS Certificate program.