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How to Persuade Your Staff to Wear Personal Protective Equipment

Let's face it, people don't do what they're supposed to do a lot of the time and there are a variety of reasons. This article shows a practical way of persuading your staff to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). To understand the behavior or lack of behavior by other people it is best to first understand yourself.

You might say to yourself but why do I need to do this because the rules are clear, in certain areas and in carrying out certain tasks PPE is mandatory, no argument. Understanding your own behavior is a step to understanding other peoples' behavior. Nowadays, it is a very important aspect of management and leadership.

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The need to understand human behavior has increased many folds over the last 10 years. It is an area that all people in leadership roles should learn about.

If you have a situation where staff members are not wearing PPE at the appropriate time and in the appropriate place, the first stage is to ask them why they are not wearing it.

Normally, the range of responses will include, "It's too uncomfortable." "I have been doing it this way for 20 years and never hurt myself." "I can't see the point of it." "I forgot." And so on. Without a doubt, human nature being what it is, the easy way, or the comfortable way will always be the first choice before the slightly harder way or the less comfortable way.

One of the ways to increase the use of PPE is to talk to your team about the consequences of not wearing it. For example, ask them if it is fair and reasonable to wear ear protection in noisy areas. You may get the response, "I am already deaf so it won't make any difference." Point out at this stage that the newer people will mimic behavior so they will copy a bad example. Ask them if they had their time again would they like their hearing returned.