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Provide Safety Solutions for All Levels of Skill and Experience

Mar 17, 2008
Safety needs change over time. Why? Those who employ the offerings develop skill and experience. In addition, the ways the offerings are used change. You need to take all of these dimensions into account when designing safe solutions.

It's good to help people to be well prepared before their first experience, but complacency and developing bad habits can turn even the most careful people into risky operators of offerings. For instance, industrial accidents occur among those who aren't adequately trained and those who are so experienced that they decide to ignore safe methods.

A dangerous piece of machinery may have a safety guard on it that keeps fingers out of harm's way. Such guards are wonderful safety features. Many guards have a drawback: They slow down the work process.

When that's the case, those who earn piecework payments are likely to remove the guards or ignore them in order to produce more.

What's missing? The kind of safety device that a novice needs may be different from what will seem right to an experienced operator. The offering maker should continue to study how its offering is employed and find ways to adjust for those with more experience. Since an item may have an expert using it for part of the day and a novice at another time, safety features need to be very flexible . . . in the same way that seat belts in vehicles adjust to adapt to the body size of the driver or passenger.

A similar issue arises among offerings for children. Even age-appropriate items will be used differently over time. A model rocket may initially be used as an educational experiment to learn about physics. But some youngsters may instead become fascinated with firing the rockets at objects to see what damage occurs.

In both cases, model rockets have lots of potential dangers. But with different uses, the dangers vary. The methods required to offset those dangers are different, too.

Being sure that the rocket cannot fire without a parachute decreases the chances of someone being harmed as the rocket returns to Earth. But that parachute doesn't do much good if the rocket is fired horizontally at someone. Perhaps a design that doesn't allow for firing except vertically would alleviate that risk.

There are also cultural differences that you need to take into account. One person may take a garment and wear it. The next person may drape the garment around the neck and create a choking risk of the end is suddenly pulled by being stuck in a moving device. Another person may wrap the garment around the face and be at risk from breathing in harmful fumes and material.
About the Author
Donald Mitchell is an author of seven books including Adventures of an Optimist, The 2,000 Percent Squared Solution, The 2,000 Percent Solution, The 2,000 Percent Solution Workbook, The Irresistible Growth Enterprise, and The Ultimate Competitive Advantage. Read about creating breakthroughs through 2,000 percent solutions and receive tips by e-mail by registering for free at

http://www.2000percentsolution.com .
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