Monkey See. Monkey Do.

Your young worker comes home from their first day on the job. You are comforted by the fact that they are being taken under the wing of an older, experienced manager. Should you be?

Why shouldn’t you? It would be fair to assume that someone who has ‘been around the block’ knows the ins and outs of the workplace and should be the best possible guide to getting your child off on the right foot; teaching them the ins and outs, tricks of the trade and time savers. It’s that last one that sometimes has a dark side.

While doing a job quickly is looked upon positively by most organizations for all the obvious reasons, it isn’t if quality is compromised. For smarter organizations, the same applies to safety. They understand the toll workplace injuries have on people they rely on and care about as well as their bottom line.

Regardless of this fact, there are individuals who look at skipping safety procedures as acceptable. This can range from not bothering with safety harnesses when working at heights to skipping the walk to the hearing protection dispenser before working with a leaf blower.

While your young worker child may have always demonstrated common sense when it comes to safety, working for someone without the same values can change everything. As an example, if their boss has forgotten a hammer up on a roof after everyone has take off their safety harnesses and asks your kid to quickly climb up and grab it, what would they do? Would they necessarily have the confidence to say no to this authority figure?

This is where parents can make a difference. By going beyond the obvious in discussions about work and asking the right questions, scenarios like the above can come to light. At that point, information can be shared regarding worker rights, not to mention the fact that no job is worth dying for.

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