Lead Safety Culture
Safety culture has been described as one of the most thoroughly researched yet poorly understood concepts in safety science (Reason, 2000). Indeed, a plethora of models and frameworks exist, which makes it difficult for practitioners to know where to begin (Vu & Di Cieri, 2015). Rather than tackle the safety culture debate directly, the LEAD framework sidesteps these conceptual issues and focusses instead on the tangible practices that should ultimately contribute to a shared pattern of beliefs and assumptions around safety culture. A feature of the LEAD model is its dynamic and situational approach: specific LEAD practices and strategies are emphasised in different operating conditions when working toward achieving optimum health and safety performance. This approach is in line with contemporary scholars who have suggested that rather than attempt to ‘manage culture’, organisations should instead ‘manage culturally’ through a focus on systems, leadership, and team work (Borys, 2012). This presentation will describe the theoretical and practical underpinnings of the LEAD safety culture model, and present the results of an applied study conducted with six organisational units at the University of Queensland where the LEAD toolkit was implemented. Following an introduction to the science underpinning the LEAD model, representatives from the University of Queensland will describe their experiences collaborating with the Office of Industrial Relations and how they achieve safety culture change.