ASSE Safety 2017 Day Three Summary (Thursday, June 22)

Here’s our third and final daily summary of the ASSE’s Safety 2017 conference.

You can also read our summary of ASSE Safety 2017 Day One and ASSE Safety 2017 Day Two.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the presentations I was lucky enough to catch on Thursday. Feel free to use the comments section at the bottom to talk about sessions you attended.

ASSE Training & Communications Practice Specialty Leadership Meeting

I’m not a member of the leadership for this practice specialty, but current head Michael Coleman was nice enough to shoot me an email and invite me to sit in.

A lot of things were discussed, including news on potential ASSE name and logo changes (stay tuned for more on that), and some things going on to make communications and knowledge share within ASSE and this practice specialty easier and more efficient.

I also learned that Michael Coleman’s preparing to step down as leader of this practice specialty and that Morgan Bliss of Central Washington University is preparing to step into the leadership role. I met Morgan and she seemed great, so I wish her luck in her new role.

Insights from Leadership Development Training for Frontline Supervisors

Lori Guasta presented data from training she helped design, develop, and deliver to frontline supervisors in mines. The purpose was to help these supervisors develop leadership skills so they could lead employees more effectively.

In doing so, Lori presented a lot of interesting information about how people see the world, communicate, and otherwise interact.

Her training breaks workplace relationships down into three parts:

  1. Person–the kind of person you (as a leader) are and/or want to be
  2. People–interacting with and leading others
  3. Environment–how your organization, including its culture, affects the two items above

And, if I wrote this all down quickly enough, here’s the outline of her 2-day course:

  1. Embracing differences
  2. Values, motivation, attitudes, and personality
  3. Generational differences
  4. Adult learning styles
  5. Communication
  6. Team building
  7. Motivation, feedback, and recognition
  8. Mentoring/coaching
  9. Accountability and vision
  10. Strategies to promote positive safety culture

Closing General Session–Why We Make Mistakes

Joseph Hallinan explained some features of human psychology that are often very helpful but sometimes cause us to make mistakes, including safety mistakes at work.

His primary message is that there’s an element of “mistake-making” that’s baked into humans, and as a result we should design systems that are safe even with those mistakes occurring.

He explained three traits that cause humans to sometimes make mistakes:

  1. Inattentional blindness–“If you don’t see something often, you often don’t see it”
  2. Selective memory–Memory is not an “exact science,” but is instead constantly being reshaped, pruned, and reinterpreted, sometimes to create a narrative that’s not objectively true
  3. Blind spots–Things we’re prone to overlook

Given this, he suggested the following:

  • Know your limitations
  • Realize humans are fallible and build that expectation into design
  • Impose constraints, including things like checklists

What about You?

What sessions did you see? Let us know in the comments section below. And we hope to see you today!

And help yourself to the free guide below, which is based in large part on ASSE/ANSI Z490.1.


Effective EHS Training: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.

Download Free Guide


Read More

ASSE Safety 2017 Day Two Summary (Wednesday, June 21)


This is our second daily summary of the ASSE’s Safety 2017 conference. You can also read our summary of ASSE Safety 2017 Day One.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the presentations I was lucky enough to catch on Wednesday.

Keynote Presentation by Mel Robbins

Confession-I missed this. I stayed in the hotel and wrote the Day One summary. But I DID hear from a handful of people who attended, and they seemed to enjoy it. A key point seemed to be something about facing up to challenges in life, counting to 5, then moving ahead to succeed. Never a bad reminder–keep trying. I’ve been there, to be sure.

Flash Presentation on Safety and Business Excellence by Kathy Seabrook

I have caught a number of presentations framing safety within the context of business excellence and find the idea intriguing. Well done, Kathy.

Critical Hazards Field Guide by Kirk Mahan

Georgia-Pacific has made a strong effort to reduce critical injuries and fatalities and have addressed five critical hazards that they have found lead to most at their facilities. Kirk showed a field guide G-P created to explain those hazards. G-P uses these field guides to spark discussions with workers.

The hazards? Uncontrolled energy, falls from heights, struck by mobile equipment, fires and explosions, and exposures to chemical and/or thermal releases.

Strategic Training Design with a Bar Napkin, a Magic Wand, and Speed Dating

A really good presentation by Sharon Kemerer and Kery Mortenson of Baxter Healthcare of how they created a training program to reduce safety incidents. Got into a lot of good instructional design tips and methods.

The program involved a focus on business goals, a desired end state, impact mapping, and a rapid gap analysis.

The completed training included modules on commitment to safety; high-impact safety conversations; hazard identification; and root-cause analyses.

A good one. Worth searching this PPT out.

Establishing an Electrical Safety Training Program

Paul Zoubek quickly walked us through a handy seven-step program in 15 short minutes. Well done, Paul.

Risk Mitigation and Wearables

I got to this short, 15-minute session a few minutes late and really regretted it, because what I DID hear sounded interesting and had lots of useful information and data. Hats off to speaker Rachel Michael. I’m going to search out her PowerPoint.

Plenary Session on Behavior-Based Safety (BBS) and Human and Organizational Performance (HOP)

This was well-designed and the four-person panel (with one moderator) were really very helpful. This was so interesting I’m going to write a shorter, separate blog post about it shortly, so stay tuned.

In the meantime, did you see this one? What were your thoughts?

Team-Based Safety Training Activities

Instructor Linda Tapp taught us a handful of team-based safety training activities that we could apply in different settings in our own trainings. And, hats off to her, she did so by having us participate in the activities as teams–learning by doing, you know!

A fun and useful session.

Using Real-Life Events and Social Media to Create High-Impact Safety Training

Joseph Sanna and JoAnn Goshorn shared some tips for telling real-life stories and mining social media to create safety training that catches people’s hearts and makes them pay attention.

JoAnn Goshorn shared her family’s own story–her father was injured while cutting down a tree–as a way to demonstrate how accidents affect a large number of people. I admired and appreciated Goshorn for sharing her story.

What about You?

What sessions did you see? Let us know in the comments section below. And we hope to see you today!

And help yourself to the free guide below, which is based in large part on ASSE/ANSI Z490.1.


Effective EHS Training: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.

Download Free Guide


Read More

ASSE Safety 2017 Day One Summary (Tuesday, June 20)

We’re down at the ASSE’s Safety 2017 conference in lovely Denver, CO this week. Are you too? If so, come see us in Booth 930 or catch Senior L&D Specialist Jeff Dalto as he takes in sessions throughout the conference.

A well-deserved hats off to the ASSE, all the presenters, and all the staff involved in putting on a conference like this, including the folks who work for the Denver Convention Center. It’s obviously a lot of work, and it’s gone off without a hitch. Kudos! Plus, hey, how about that nice weather the folks in the ASSE’s weather department dialed up for us, huh?

The biggest problem I’ve faced while down at ASSE has been choosing the presentations I’ve wanted to see. There are so many good ones, I’ve been faced with tough choices during each time slot and have had to miss some I really wanted to see (notably, one by Pamela Walaski on scaling a safety and health management system for small and medium-sized companies, but I’m happy to say she wrote a great article in the most recent issues of Professional Safety magazine on the same topic).

Before I list the presentations I saw, I want to congratulation Samantha Horseman of Saudi Aramco. She won the Safety Management Innovation Award and then gave her prize to the ASSE Foundation. Admirable stuff all the way around–good on her, and an inspiration to all of us.

OK, here’s what I’ve seen since I’ve been there.

Keynote Presentation by Philosopher Tom Morris

Author of many books, including “The Oasis Within,” Morris was a lively, engaging, funny speaker who listed his “7 Cs for Success”: Conception, Confidence, Concentration, Consistency, Emotional Commitment, Character, and Capacity to Enjoy. A bonus for mentioning ancient philosopher Zeno and recent NFL running back Jerome Bettis in the same speech.

Jonathan Klane’s “Flash Session” on Non-Fiction Storytelling in Safety

Klane is with Arizona State University (“Forks Up!”) and gave a good, quick reminder of the value in telling stories while talking about safety and/or delivering safety training. And even though it wasn’t the stated intention of his presentation, he also demonstrated well the value of determining what “problem” you’re trying to fix before developing safety training.

I am working with Klane and others to create ANSI/ASSE Z490.2, the standard on virtual safety training, so it was neat to be able to meet him face-to-face.

Roundtable on the ISO 45001 Standard

Moderated by the ASSE’s one-and-only Tim Fisher, this roundtable with Victory Troy, Todd Hohn, and Kathy Seabrook was well-attended and included a few quick summaries of key clauses within the upcoming standard on safety and health management and a good Q&A session.

The speakers mentioned this was the third year in a row they’ve given a status update on ISO 45001 at an ASSE conference, and that this will be the last. Why? Because they expect the standard to be done and final within 12 months. So watch for that, it’s a big event.

What Safety Professionals Need to Know about Environmental Regulations

Salvatore Caccavalle did an admirable job of introducing attendees to the basic framework of environmental regulations in the US, noting that many safety professionals have to be aware of and comply with these regulations (often without a true environmental expert on staff).

A baseball fan, Caccavalle exposed his love for his hometown Boston Red Sox and even dated one environmental reg as “the same year as the Miracle Mets.” It’s always good to see folks have a life outside work.

Humor in Safety/Safety Training

Speaker Tim Page-Bottorff did a nice job of reminding attendees that safety and safety training can be fun, and in fact should be. He demonstrated a few ways to make safety training more engaging, more active/participatory, and more memorable.

Job well done. Remember, folks, it doesn’t have to be wooden or put folks to sleep. And, in fact, it shouldn’t.

Safety Differently

Probably my favorite session of the day, and that’s saying a lot for the final presentation of the day. Ron Gantt did a nice job of asking attendees to consider turning our conceptions of safety “upside down.”

Gannt asked us to consider safely differently than we have in the past, with a focus on:

  • The definition of safety
  • The role of “the people” in safety (meaning workers)
  • The focus on the organization

Gantt’s unusual definition of safety is “the capacity to be successful in varying conditions.” He believes that people are often considered the problem in safety but instead should be considered the solution. And he thinks safety professionals and the organization should do everything they can to support the people, while believing that the organization has an ethical role to support the safety of the people.

I’ve read Gannt’s stuff for a few years now and see him on LinkedIn from time to time, so this was a real treat for me to see him live.

For more about Gannt’s ideas, check out the Safety Differently website.

What about You?

What sessions did you see? Let us know in the comments section below. And we hope to see you today!

And help yourself to the free guide below, which is based in large part on ASSE/ANSI Z490.1.


Effective EHS Training: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.

Download Free Guide


Read More

OSHA Makes Available New, Helpful PSM Guidelines

OSHA Compliance Requirements OSHA has released three new guidance documents to help small business comply with the Process Safety Management (PSM) regulation.

In brief, there are resources for PSM for small businesses, PSM for storage facilities, and PSM for explosives and pyrotechnics manufacturing.

A little help from OSHA is always a good thing and is to be commended. Thanks, OSHA!

We’ve got links to the three OSHA guidances plus some links to resources we’ve created over time to help with PSM compliance as well. There’s even a free PSM Compliance Checklist for you below.

Read on below for more information and resources.


Read More

How to Operate a Forklift: Pre-Operation, Traveling, Load Handling, and Maintenance

Safe Forklift Operation Image

In this article, we set out to explain how to operate a forklift. If you’ve been wanting to learn how to drive a forklift, then this is a great starting point for you.

You’ll learn valuable and helpful information in this article, but please know that you won’t know how to drive a forklift safely just as a result of reading this article. That takes more extensive forklift operator training, including demonstrations from a skilled instructor, practice forklift operation by you, and a forklift operator skill demonstration evaluated by your instructor.

But, as we said, if you’re looking for a great and helpful 101-level introduction of how to operate a forklift, then you’re in the right place.


Read More

OSHA To Delay Enforcement of Silica Standard for Construction Industry

OSHA recently announced that they’re delaying the enforcement of 1926.1153, the Crystalline Silica Standard for the Construction Industry.

According to OSHA, they’re pushing back enforcement of 1926.1153 until September 23, 2017. They intend to use that time to conduct “additional outreach and provide educational materials and guidance for employers.”

If you want to keep up with further changes, the best thing to do is sign up for this email notification system from OSHA. I signed up for a similar one on the Online Reporting Requirements recently and can confirm it worked well.

Read on below for more information and resources.


Read More

The New Convergence Incident Management System (IMS): Coming Soon

Need help keeping track of workplace incidents, such as injuries, illnesses, property damage, and more?

How about reporting and acting upon near-misses and safety observations?

If so, you’ll be happy to know that our new Incident Management System (IMS) is coming soon.


Here are a few of the things you’ll be able to do with our new IMS:

  • Create, edit, manage, and track the status of incident reports
  • Attach associated incident documents and images, including digital photos and videos
  • Select involved personnel directly from the system
  • Document OSHA-recordable and MSHA-recordable injuries and illnesses, and submit those directly to OSHA and MSHA
  • Identify root causes
  • Prescribe, record, and track corrective actions

So, stay tuned for more!

Until then, you may be interested in reading our HOW TO CONDUCT AN INCIDENT INVESTIGATION blog article. And don’t forget to download our free Job Hazard Analysis Guide, below.

Creating Learning Objectives Btn

Job Hazard Analysis Guide

Learn how to perform a job hazard analysis on the job with our free step-by-step guide.

Download Free Guide

Creating Learning Objectives Btn

Read More

OSHA Forklift Certification and Training Requirements

Forklift Lifting and Tilting Mast Image

According to an OSHA Powered Industrial Trucks (Forklifts) eTool:

Only trained and competent operators shall be permitted to operate a powered industrial truck.

But what are the OSHA forklift training requirements? When is a person eligible for an OSHA forklift certification?

We explain everything you need to know about OSHA forklift training in this article. So if you want to know the OSHA forklift certification requirements, strap on your seat belt and spend the next couple of minutes with us.

PLUS, if you scroll to the bottom of this article, you’ll see a big black download button that you can use to download four forklift inspection and refueling/recharging checklists. All for free. What a bargain! 


Read More

ASSE Safety 2017: Come See Us in Denver, Co June 19-22, 2017

We’re going to be at the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) Safety 2017 conference in Denver, CO June 19-22 in Denver, CO and hope to get a chance to meet you while we’re there.

Come visit us in Booth 930 to see our safety and health eLearning courses (including many new and updated titles), our new mobile safety training apps (for smart phones and tablets), and coming soon, the Incident Management module of our Convergence Learning Management System, or LMS (which is ideal for safety and health compliance training needs) .

Also, our Senior Learning & Development Specialist Jeff Dalto, who writes the Convergence Training blog, will be attending as a learner to take in a bunch of sessions and he’s hoping to meet a lot of you in person.

Finally, while Jeff’s there, he’s planning on meeting up with other members of the ANSI/ASSE Z490.2 (Virtual Safety Training) committee. Jeff is a member of this working committee, has enjoyed working toward the creation of this new national standard on online safety training, and is excited to see what advances can be made while at least some of the committee members are in Denver at the conference. Click here to read Jeff’s latest update on the developing of the ANSI/ASSE Z490.2 standard.

See you in Denver! And let us know if you have any questions for us.

And while you’re here, feel free to download our Guide to Effective EHS Training, which is based on ANSI/ASSE Z490.2.


Effective EHS Training: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn how to design, create, deliver, and evaluate effective EHS training by following these best practices with our free step-by-step guide.

Download Free Guide


Read More

How to Get a Forklift License

Forklift Operator Image

Need to know how to get a forklift license?

In this article, we spell out everything you need to know about getting a forklift operator’s license. We’ll keep it short and to the point, we promise.

Enjoy the article and good luck

PLUS, as an added bonus, there’s a big black download button at the bottom of this article that you give click to download four forklift inspection and refueling/recharging checklists. If you’re a safety manager at work, you know how great this is. If you’re not, download the checklists anyway, give them to your safety manager, and make his or her day.


Read More

Convergence Training Named One of Top Places to Work in Portland, OR

Thanks to our friends at Zippia for listing yours truly, Convergence Training, as one of the top 20 places to work in the Portland, OR area (we’re actually located in Camas, WA, just north of Portland).

Here’s what Zippia had to say about working at Convergence Training:

Convergence provides training software and eLearning courses on a variety of industrial skills on subjects like packaging, manufacturing, workplace safety, and maintenance. As far as working there, former workers have mentioned that designers of the eLearning software are given plenty of leeway to create interesting and useful content in a supportive environment.

And congrats to all of the other great companies on the list, including:

  • SalesFirst Recruiting
  • Evo
  • Intuitive Digital
  • Propeller
  • Marquam Group
  • 52 Limited
  • Idealist Consulting
  • Zapproved
  • Fortis Construction-Oregon
  • InfoGroup Northwest
  • Fuel Medical
  • BizTek People
  • Logical Position
  • Maul Foster & Alongi
  • DiscoverOrg
  • MasterPlans
  • Boly:Welch
  • Sole Financial
  • Silken Management Group

Well done, all!

Read More

Health and Safety Management Systems: 5 Steps to a Safer Workplace

health and safety management systems image

If you want a workplace that’s healthier and safer,  health and safety management systems are key.

Here’s how OSHA puts it in their Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs:

Establishing a safety and health program in your workplace is one of the most effective ways of protecting your most valuable asset: your workers.

And here’s how ANSI Z10, the national standard for Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems, puts it:

There is widespread agreement that the use of management systems can improve organizational performance, including performance in the occupational health and safety arena.

In this article, we’ll explain what a health and safety management system is, list the key elements of a health and safety management system, give you tips for getting a health and safety system in place at your work, and provide some additional helpful resources.


Read More