During the Lewis two-day, leadership team meeting in Rochester last October, we had an impactful speaker, Dale Lesinski, share a message about “Safety 4 the Right Reasons.” He asked us to close our eyes and think about the four people who we love the most in this world and to whom we never want anything bad to happen. Visualize those friends and family members who, if something happened, would alter our lives completely. Then he asked us, “Were you one of them?” If not, think about the impact on their lives if something bad were to happen to us.
We are naturally hard-wired to take care of others before ourselves. That’s why, especially in utility line clearance, we need to leverage that and look out for each other. But we also need to pay attention to the message that we’re sending and bring those loved ones into the equation. Instead of stating, “Gary, put your hardhat on,” say, “Think about your family, Gary, and please put that hardhat on.”
Another story that resonated with many was that of a person sweeping floors at a NASA space station when President Kennedy visited. When he was asked what he was doing, he replied, “I’m helping put a man on the moon.” He understood the relevance of his position and internalized the bigger picture. If someone were to ask you that same question, would you respond, “Trimming trees”? Or, “I’m making sure my brother gets home safely tonight.” Maybe you would consider your impact on coworkers from afar and respond, “I’m helping to ensure a healthy future for 4,000 families nationwide.”
I encourage us all to think of the bigger picture.