Corey Drake, LandSouth’s Safety Specialist grew up around safety. You can say that safety is in his DNA. Corey’s mother was a safety and risk specialist and Corey followed in her footsteps, ultimately earning a degree in safety from Murray State. He brings that dedication and natural affinity for safety to work at LandSouth every day.
Safety is a process, a commitment to doing things the right way. LandSouth has spent considerable time and effort to prepare and train all their employees to put safety first. Now, with Corey, safety is taking an even more prominent role – becoming part of the decision-making process. Every decision, every scenario should start with safety at the forefront. It is no longer, “What do we do when an accident occurs?” It is now, “How can we prevent injuries and accidents?”
It all starts with leadership. When leaders are committed to safety, it becomes a priority for everyone else. The attitude changes, and that is what Corey sees as the biggest risk, the biggest threat to safety. An attitude of apathy, nonchalance is a dangerous thing on a construction site. Workers needlessly accept risks, and this can unintentionally show a lack of caring for themselves and their co-workers. Leaders must embody the attitude of safety first. If it appears that leaders don’t take safety seriously, then it is likely that workers will follow suit. This can cascade throughout as safety affects every part of a project.
At LandSouth, leadership is finding new ways to showcase their commitment to safety. The decision-making process has evolved. Every part of the construction process reflects this enhanced commitment to safety, from project design to the final touches. LandSouth leaders have gone through different scenarios to identify risks and put steps and procedures in place to keep workers safe. This has led to increased training, more time at job sites, and positive reinforcement when they see things being done the right way, the safe way. Corey and his team aren’t the safety police. Their goal is to provide the knowledge, tools and processes to help people care and look out for one another and ultimately do the right thing to build that culture of safety.
The key is to look for solutions to safety hazards, not place blame on people. Listen to them, teach them, and encourage idea sharing and utilize the expertise of the people on the job site. They usually know better than anyone the safest and most efficient ways of doing things. They also know where and when shortcuts are made and can help determine ways to avoid shortcuts that risk safety.
In today’s world, it may feel like there are even greater needs for shortcuts. The world has changed, and the construction industry is no exception. With the tremendous growth in the Southeast, there has been a boom in construction. Subcontractors are harder to find – as they can pick and choose their jobs. Demand has never been higher and combine that with labor shortages and shaky supply chains, and the willingness to take risks could easily increase. That is why the commitment to safety is more important than ever. Increased stress, changing timelines – all of these can lead to greater risks, and these risks could mean danger to people and the to the business.
Safety is good for business and adds to the bottom line, saving money and increasing the likelihood of a successful completion of a project. There are steps businesses can take, including Corey’s top 3.
1. Pre-plan and try to identify risks before the job starts.
2. Training and development – make sure people know what to do and what not to do.
3. Empower workers on the site. Listen to their ideas and recommendations.
It starts with the right attitude. Together, everyone plays a part in safety and can help drive business to success….safely.
ABOUT LANDSOUTH CONSTRUCTION…Building Ideas
LandSouth Construction, the Southeast’s premier general contractor, specializing in multifamily, senior living, and mixed-use development, was named one of Engineering News Record’s Top 400. Since 1998, LandSouth has transformed ideas into best–in–class communities. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla. LandSouth has completed more than 25,000 multifamily units. For more information, call LandSouth’s Marketing Coordinator, Kaley Robinson, (904) 760-3188, or visit www.landsouth.com