A New Approach to Safety
There is a serious flaw in how most companies think about safety. In the 21st Century we live and work in a world characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity, but many still cling to safety concepts dating back to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. They rely on procedures, structures and processes that had become outdated. They’re forever trying to engineer better systems and they spend millions on trying to educate and train their people to understand and use these systems. When that fails as it often does they try to enforce compliance with disciplinary and punitive actions.
Impenetrable Safety Glass Ceiling
While this might have worked to some extent in a world that was mostly stable, predictable and manageable 20 or 50 or a 100 years ago, it is no longer enough. Even with the best efforts they now continuously fall short in a world which has changed and is due to change even more. Most companies that still rely on conventional approaches to safety realize this – they see exactly where they want to be but it is as if they are looking at it through an impenetrable glass ceiling that stops them from reaching their espoused ideals and goals such as “Zero Harm” or even worse, “Zero Incident”.
At Saacosh we get this. We’ve been down that road and we’ve shared the intense frustration of CEOs, MDs, GMs, Safety Managers, Safety Officers and others who did everything they could but still failed to break through this Safety Glass Ceiling. In spite of their best efforts and intentions they still have more incidents and accidents and sometimes fatalities than any of us can and want to endure.
Join the Journey
And so we continued to look deeper and discovered that it is possible to break through the Safety Glass Ceiling in a world where much of what we were taught and once believed is no longer enough to create safe working places. We looked at how some high-risk organizations such as nuclear power plants, offshore drilling rigs, naval aircraft carriers, aviation systems and Formula-1 teams were able to break through the Safety Glass Ceiling and we adopted their approaches and principles into what we offer our clients.
Saacosh incorporates principles and practices from High Reliability Organizing (HRO), social neuroscience, safety management, legal liability, leadership development, risk management and occupational health and safety to provide an unprecedented list of offerings and services. Through our consulting, training and safety solutions we have helped some of the world’s leading organizations break through the Safety Glass Ceiling. This comes down to not only investing in systems and prevention, but also investing in people and building real-time resilience.
Brief History of Saacosh
Our history dates back several decades into the early 1980’s - a time when our founding members first ventured into South Africa’s occupational health and safety industry. Looking back, those were the “cowboy days” when large corporations realised they had to do better at occupational health and safety and grabbed onto every new model and theory in order to improve their often-tainted reputations.
A Company Born
While some of these did help to improve the way some companies were doing safety, they still failed to transform organizational cultures embedded in safety and health practices dating back to the Industrial Revolution. Intensely frustrated with this reality, founding member and safety pioneer Francois Smith then embarked on a journey that entailed academic study in South Africa and the USA as well as practical research and experimentation on the dynamics of occupational health and safety in the 21st Century workplace.
Francois later joined forces with Greg Heger to establish Saacosh (Pty) Ltd in January 2005. Their passion and aim was to establish an organisation that would uplift and transform the professionalism of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Practitioners in South Africa.
Delivering the Dream
Saacosh has since grown into a multi-dimensional one-stop services company that addresses the health and safety needs of companies, practitioners, leaders, managers, supervisors and coalface employees through the following four distinct business focus areas:
- The Saacosh Academy provides in-house occupational health and safety training to clients across the globe. However, we are proudly African and most of our greatest successes have come from assisting clients on this great continent to break through their Safety Glass Ceilings.
- We offer tailor-made Conventional Health and Safety consultation and training including contractor management and auditing, supervisor development, legal liability and risk management.
- Assisting organizations to implement the principles of High Reliability Organizing (HRO) and social neuroscience that holds safety and health as core values.
- Equipping leaders to instigate lasting safety culture transformation based on a combination of the latest scientific research, leadership theory and practical experience.
- Producing safety training and related multi-media material such as DVD’s, courses, clips and case studies available through our “resources” window on our website.