This is a continuation from my previous blog
While this group is concerned with work, they also have a busy home life where others are reliant on them. They need to be there and able to provide not only in a financial sense but also in interactions (playing with kids, looking after kids, driving to sports, picking up from day-care/school). The key to this group is to bring home the message of what things would be like if they were unable to perform the duties that they usually perform at home. Not only would the worker be unable to perform these duties, but it would also mean that their partner would have to perform more. Most people quickly get what this would mean to the family dynamic, and the nature of the spousal relationship.
Despite best intentions and encouragement, it appears that some are very reluctant to adopt the new way. When looking at achieving behavioural change we can use the marketing adoption curve (shown below). We are essentially trying to sell a new approach, so this seems appropriate. The laggards in this diagram are in all workplaces and will be hard to convince no matter what you say.
In my opinion the best approach is to capture the rest of the workplace and make these people the minority in the workplace. We use our innovators and early adopters as much as we can. Once we have the early majority then we have more than half of the workplace wanting to make the change. The adoption curve says that we will then start to capture the rest. In a sense we are using peer pressure to achieve our goals.
So…if we can give people good reasons to change their thinking in relation to manual tasks, does this mean that we will see dramatic changes to workplace behaviours. I don’t think so, at least not immediately. It is not reasonable to think that wholesale change will ensue from one manual handling training session. It will not, so what else can we do?
This brings us to our next element of effective manual handling training… Train realistic and workplace specific techniques.