Addressing Safety in Employee Orientation

Addressing Safety in Employee Orientation

Leveraging Personality Assessments to Build Personalized Orientation

As a rule of thumb, employee risk assessments should not just be used once, rather for assessing risks on an ongoing basis.

TalentClick’s Greg Ford lays out the framework of using personality assessments such as the Safety Quotient™ to gain an understanding of the default personality of a new hire and address safety in employee orientation with a program personalized to their unique personality.

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Greg Ford: Hello everyone. Greg Ford here with TalentClick Workforce Solutions. Today, we’re going to talk about orientation and onboarding of new employees. In other sessions, you might have heard I was talking about using the personality risk assessment for hiring safer workers. There’s another application for an assessment like this and it’s for that actual onboarding session. There can be many benefits for this and we’ll talk about some of those a bit later. Essentially, onboarding (if you don’t have one of these programs in place) is a program where that new employee gets oriented on things like history of the company, vision, values, the physical work environment, and so on.

Safety Self-Awareness

And also job expectations. One of the job expectations is safe behavior. Now, there’s a new twist on this. When we look at using a personality risk assessment, it’s a chance to help that person understand themselves. We call it Safety Self-Awareness. It’s a chance to break old habits and commit to new, safer habits. How do we that? Well, a very good personality risk assessment will have, at the end of it, a personal action plan; it’s a workbook. We call it the SafeSELF Action Plan. It only takes about 30 minutes to have someone sit and work through this on their own and it gives them a good sense of who they are. They look at their own results, they look at their own scores which might be high or low.

By the way, we’re careful to say (even if you have higher risk scores), it doesn’t mean you’re a bad person; it’s just how we’re born. So, once they look through some of these dimensions and really develop that Safety Self-Awareness – at least to the self-monitoring of their own behavior and that’s where behavioral change can come in.


What are some examples of these dimensions? If you haven’t seen one of these reports, one example might be rule resistance. This is the kind of person who can be a little bit more defiant and often thinks the rules don’t apply to him or her. And when they sit and work through this on their own and then possibly sit with that foreman or supervisor, they get a better sense of why that rule is place.

A very powerful tool is for the supervisor to tell stories to say, “Six months ago, someone like you was here. They didn’t heed the rules, they didn’t think it applied to them. And this is what happened: Here’s the injury, fatality, or work stoppages that took place”. And then often that rule resistant person will think it through and there’s more buy-in at that point.

Another example could be distractibility. A distractable person needs variety and stimulation – they often lose focus on the job site. So, the foreman or supervisor – whoever is managing that person – gets to know that about the person and they can work together and commit to more frequent breaks throughout the day, or (if possible) moving that person around on the job site for different tasks and responsibilities.

A final example could be an impulsive person. This is a person who is a little bit more reckless – they’re a little bit more of a risk taker. Often, that person does not think through the consequences of their actions. Here’s where storytelling can really benefit the process because the supervisor or foreman can help them understand the consequences of the actions. It’s a very powerful way for behavioral change to take place. If you implement something like this during your onboarding and orientation process, you absolutely will see incremental gains – there’s no question.

You’ll see fewer incidents, fewer work stoppages, less property damage, probably decreased insurance rates, maybe even increased employee morale and engagement. Overall, you should be pleased with your results. If you want more information, click on the link on the screen. Aside from that, thanks for watching and have a great, safe day.