Site Safety
Ryan Hartley
Oct 30, 2021

What the **** is a Toolbox talk!

What the **** is a Toolbox talk!

What the **** is a Toolbox Talk!

In New Zealand, health and safety can look and feel a bit like the big, bad, coffee stained blue folder in the back of the ute and in reality the legislation feels a bit the same way. Good news though, you don't need to be a Health and Safety consultant to up-skill your health and safety knowledge!Toolbox talks are a great opportunity to get your team to take a quick 15 minute breather each week to check in with each other, and for you to check in with your on site staff.

Here are 4 examples that you can bring up at your next toolbox meeting:

1. Review last week

This is an opportunity to review what the latest is with job sites, and your workers. Were there any near misses or incidents we can review and learn from to try and prevent similar or the same situation happening again? 

We can’t relay enough how crucial it is to build a culture within your business that allows people to feel comfortable to talk about these situations. As it's about learning and improving not naming and shaming.

2. What's happening this week?

Talking about the week ahead is not just ideal from a health and safety point of view, but also from a productivity and efficiency aspect. Why? Knowing what's happening on site e.g deliveries, equipment maintenance, inspections etc, is crucial to staying safe. Communication is key, and is one of the best tools we have in our toolbox to aid and prosper a positive health and safety culture on site.

3. Risk and Hazards

A fundamental part of any successful toolbox talk is to take a second to think about what risks or hazards are currently on site and what may be identified at a later date. You need to make sure everyone is aware of all site risks and hazards. It’s important to not just list them on the hazard board, but actually conduct a risk assessment. Identify the risk and potential harm, put control measures in place and re-evaluate the risk to make sure it’s ideally been eliminated or managed. 

A super easy way to manage risk is with Site App Pro's risk matrix. How? With being a dynamic risk assessment tool, it allows you to properly manage and control risks without all the paperwork that’s normally paired with it. An added bonus, it also means you can easily refer back to it and induct new people to existing hazards.

4. Open up the floor for comments and questions

This is a great opportunity to get feedback and comments from the team. No idea's a bad idea, as developing a comfortable environment to say what's on your mind is vital. If no one wants to stand in the space, maybe ask certain individuals if they are comfortable with what has been discussed, or refer back to some of the risks and hazards and ask if they have anything to add. Don't feel disheartened if you get a few crickets for the first couple of toolbox talks, as shifting a culture and mindset doesn't happen overnight - but you’ve got to start somewhere!

Toolbox talks are a great way to stay connected with your team and build a safer culture within your business. You should include the subbies if they are there when you hold the meeting as they are responsible for not only their own safety, but also for managing any potential hazards they bring to the site.

Quick Tip:

Keep a record of your toolbox talks! This is so you have a record to refer back to if you ever get audited. You can record and capture attendees and their signatures with Site App Pro and our template for toolbox talks.

Request a demo here to see how easy it is to record a toolbox with our awesome app.

About the author

Ryan Hartley

Ryan Hartley

Head of Sales

I've been with Site App Pro before it had the "Pro" on the end (2015). I started working for Site App while I was finishing my degree then moved into a full-time role as the only sales rep once I finished my BA. I then moved into > Business Development Manager > Head of Sales. Some say I was born for the role here at Site App Pro as my dad and his best mates started Site App back in 2014. I absolutely love sales, hustling, cold calling, managing new reps and everything sales. Ryan is the team member most likely to use emojis whenever he writes a message 🔥, Spearfishing, Diving and surfing with the more than odd craft beer.

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