Work Smart. Work Safe.
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Field trippin’

By Melissa Babcock

Last week, my daughter went on a field trip to Devonian Botanic Garden. This is the second time her class has made this particular trip, so we knew what to expect: a bus ride to the property outside of town, a jaunt through acres of exotic plants and flowers and some presentations by the folks who work at the garden and keep it beautiful. It’s always a fun time for the kids and everyone is well-versed in how to make sure it’s a safe time as well.

The night before, I reminded my daughter of the rules to keep her and her friends safe on their field trip and it occurred to me that many of the precautions they take can be applied to the workplace as well. Maybe safe field trip participation is laying the groundwork for adults working safely? Here are a few of the things we chatted about that I hope my future young worker will remember:

Stick with your buddy. After a field trip, my daughter always talks about her buddy and how they sat together on the bus and spent the day looking after each other. The buddy system, tried and true, is also a good idea at work. Whether it’s in a remote location or a shop at the mall, having at least two people working together is safer than working alone. Plus, it’s great for camaraderie and helps work get done faster! Safety in numbers. Two is better than one. Old sayings often contain great advice.

Be wary of the elements. The day of her trip was forecasted as both sunny and cloudy with a chance of rain, so I made sure my daughter had her coat, shoes that would stay dry, a hat and a bottle of water. Whether you’re having fun with classmates learning about nature, or spending the day outside on a job site, it’s important to protect yourself from whatever Mother Nature may bring.

When in doubt, ask! As her class walked around the gardens, they asked tons of questions about everything under the sun (“What is that? Can I touch it? Can I climb this tree?”). As we get older, we tend to lose our inquisitive nature and young workers often hesitate to ask questions for fear of looking silly. I always tell my daughter to ask questions about anything she’s unsure about and I hope this sticks with her when she joins the workforce.

My daughter had a blast on her field trip and returned safe and happy, armed with new knowledge about nature and a few lessons about safety.

Did you learn any lessons about safety as a child that stuck with you as a young worker? Let us know by leaving a comment, or tweet us @HeadsUpAB!

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