One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways of building and reinforcing your company’s safety culture is presenting Toolbox Talks to your staff on a regular basis.
What are Toolbox Talks? Toolbox Talks are brief, informal talks on safety topics designed to empower your staff with knowledge that they can use to improve their job. Ideally, companies should hold a short Toolbox Talk at the start of the workday at least once a week.
These Toolbox Talk topics can range from general driving safety, to specialized topics within your industry like scaffold safety or confined space safety, just to name some examples.
Onsite Safety has made it easy to host these Toolbox Talks. With our handy guides, you can download a PDF kit that gives you a presentation guide, a handout to give to your staff, and a sign-in sheet that you can use for your company’s record keeping. It’s everything you need to host a Toolbox Talk all in one kit.
Benefits of Toolbox Talks:
- Safety awareness among your team
- Increased hazard recognition & compliance
- Increased morale
- Decreased accidents & injuries
- Addresses small issues before they turn into large ones
- Provides direct insight into worker’s attitudes
- Solidifies safety culture in your organization
How to present a Toolbox Talk:
Holding Toolbox Talks for your business is easy! Luckily, Onsite Safety has packaged everything you need into one downloadable resource.
A typical Toolbox Talk is split into 3 parts:
- Informational Handout – This is what you’ll pass out to your workers. It identifies the topic as well as gives a brief run-down of all the pertinent information they need to know.
- Presentation Guide Instruction Sheet – This sheet is for the presenter giving the presentation. It gives the background of the topic, as well as “talking points” you can use to facilitate discussion. Think of it as a “cheat sheet” to help the presenter.
- Sign-in Sheet – Keep for your company records on who attended the talk.
Different environments of Toolbox Talk presentations:
Gather ’round your employees and pass out an informational handout to each of them. Then, briefly discuss the topic and ask questions in a candid manner. If you need help with talking points, reference the presentation guide for an easy-to-use guide to get your meetings up and running. Make sure you ask leading questions that will solidify the topic in your worker’s minds. These kinds of Toolbox Talks can be held almost anywhere.
If your company has access to PowerPoint software or Google Slides, this can be an excellent tool to present to your staff. Usually a brief PowerPoint presentation can be accompanied by a handout for greater impact. Use the PowerPoint as a “jumping off” point to engage with your staff, asking specific questions that are applicable to their daily tasks. Initiate a round-table discussion about the topic at hand for greater interaction.
During these Toolbox Talks, your workers should feel confident that they can bring up any issues or concerns without fear of retribution. Your job as facilitator is to engage your workers to ask questions, which will lead to a greater understanding of the topic.
Often in the construction or other outdoor industry, it is not practical for workers to meet in an office every week. The good news is that Toolbox Topics are designed for just this task! They can easily be held in the beginning of the workday around trucks before the day begins. Start by offering an open-ended question about your desired topic, and facilitate an open-door discussion with your workers. As long as the presenter has the Presenting Guide PDF, they can easily read prompts and sample questions to aid in the dialogue.
If you work in an office environment and it is not feasible to hold a meeting, you can send out the Toolbox Talk PDF in a mass email to your staff. This should be accompanied with instructions to managers to follow-up with your staff to ensure that they viewed it and understood it. For maximum impact, this PDF could be paired with a video or other interactive media. However, it is always best to hold Toolbox Talks in person whenever possible.
Toolbox Talks are a great way to reinforce safety concepts within your company. They are also easy to understand and can be held just about anywhere! For a list of Toolbox Talk ideas, visit our Safety Resource page for free downloadable material.