Wall-to-Wall Carpeting or Area Rugs?

Is your training like wall-to-wall carpeting or is it thoughtfully laid out with area rugs.  Wall-to-wall covers more, but is it the best?  Over the next few posts we will discuss The Safely Working Project’s approach and guidance for employee training.

First, let’s see what employee training might be necessary based on what OSHA says.  Here are some selected phrases from various OSHA training requirements:

Employees shall be informed…   Review the plan with employees…   Employee training shall include…   Recognition and preventive measures for safety hazards…   Instructed as to the hazards of their respective jobs…   Work procedures applicable to these hazards…   Operating and inspecting the equipment…   The training shall establish employee proficiency in the duties…

Keep in mind OSHA has no specific training standard that establishes what constitutes training.  More importantly, not every OSHA regulation includes training requirements.  If we train only to what OSHA specifies is that enough?  Definitely not.  Training should be based on the work area conditions and employee activities; think MOTELS.  Besides that, there are several other important aspects of employee training that shape an effective training plan.

With the above in mind, let’s consider a concise, yet encompassing mission statement for employee training.  It might go like this:

Our employees will be informed and familiar with all processes, policies, plans, programs, practices and procedures relevant to their duties;  Employees will be trained to establish proficiency in their respective jobs to recognize the dangers, prepare and organize the workspace, inspect and check equipment, control the conditions, operate with skill, and guard against mishaps.

Does that look familiar?  In the recent post A Place for Everything, we discussed the 6 priorities that describe how an employer implements Safely Working.  Safe 6®, as simple as it is, is comprehensive and has the rest covered.  A quick review of Safe 6 can be found here.

You may think that the best way to train is with a wall-to-wall carpet approach.  But that means the carpet nap, padding, fiber and density are all the same.  Yet, effective training can’t have the same objectives, content, scope, and delivery across the board.  Just as you’d want a different carpet in different rooms, you need different training in different work areas.  So different training approaches might be more appropriate just like different area rugs may be better than wall-to-wall carpet.

There is much to discuss so stay tuned, we’ll be back with more useful information and guidance on employee training for a Safely Working™ Environment.


©2015 The Safely Working Project & P.D. Shafer III

“Safe 6” is a registered trademark of Trailmarker Ltd.
“Safely Working” is a trademark of Trailmarker Ltd.


While we believe what The Safely Working Project is promoting is useful to all employers and safety professionals, our efforts are directed at those small businesses that can’t afford or don’t have a safety professional to facilitate workplace safety.

The Safely Working Project is an approach to workplace safety that is driven by employees and supervisors.  This is fundamentally different from the traditional Safety Program where an EHS Professional manages workplace safety.  So, instead of top down safety, Safely Working™ endeavors to succeed from the ground up. “We’re turning safety upside down.”