One Companies Management Strategy To Achieve Safety Excellence

Paul Snyder, CSP

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A chemical company with 90 sites and 17,000 employees found itself near the bottom of its peer group. Upper management wanted major improvement.  Initially the Corporate EHS group was tasked with developing a plan.  They used input from site EHS folks and operations managers.  It first utilized a culture perception survey – worldwide, and suggested new safety roles and responsibilities at all levels. It emphasized increasing employee involvement and recommended employee safety activities.  The initial roll out of the “Safety Journey” was later described as EHS “throwing it over the fence” to the plants.   After 2 years the effort was stagnant and some thought it fit the category of “program of the month”. A new renewal team was formed consisting of safety professionals, plant managers, foremen and chaired by a manufacturing VP which was very important.  The new team adopted a company safety “vision”, safety journey components, safety management principles, and beliefs.

The main components were participation tools, a safety culture assessment, site management plan, roles and responsibilities template, metrics and first line leader safety training. 

The principles adopted were:

Commitment and Leadership at all levels

Line Ownership of safety

Roles and responsibilities - accountability


Competent EHS support

Comprehensive safety systems and practices


The team described and explained new Safety Beliefs:

There were five. Two very important ones were “the health and safety of people is valued above all else” and “Good safety is a result of the attitudes and beliefs of people. People take risks and allow other to take risks because they believe they will not get hurt.”


All of the above was presented to company leadership and confirmed. The renewed Safety Journey was a success.



To present a large companies successful safety improvement effort. To review the various components of it and give enough detail for anyone interested to duplicate all or parts. Literature and references that were utilized to develop the program will be described.


Target Audience:

Safety personnel

Facility and company management

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Speaker: Paul Snyder, CSP,

Paul Snyder, CSP. Mr. Snyder has over 40 years safety and industrial hygiene experience including 32 years with a major chemical manufacturer. Mr. Snyder worked extensively with OSHA on the Voluntary Protection Program and served on the Region III VPPPA board and as a Special Government Employee (SGE). Since 2007 he has been providing safety management consulting to major corporations.

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