2 min read: A number of minor H&S, Quality and Environmental issues were being raised by a client during the monthly audits which could easily be reduced. This was creating an aversive environment for the site and client team. Its also resulted in significant additional time spent dealing with related emails and a production loss with time being spent rectifying issues on site.
The project manager wanted to make it more likely that his supervisors and engineers walked each other’s works area and provided constructive feedback to one another. After learning a little bit about behavioural science and the relationship between the work environment and current behaviours he decided to make the following day to day changes:
Set new expectations: working with the team he set new expectations for the behaviour required. He also modelled the behaviour by taking various members out of the team to carry out their own assessments.
Provide frequent feedback: using display boards to trigger and track the closure of items, allocated to individuals, circulating meeting minute notes to the site team including positive feedback from their observations, feeding back on results of audits, reduction in actions requested from the client on a monthly basis.
Used positive reinforcement: one of the key learnings from a behavioural programme is understanding others and what they find reinforcing. He set out to increase the rate of positive reinforcement he delivered for the desired behaviour: "The use of encouragement and positive reinforcement yielded better results and created a healthier environment for the team to grow. Once I had a better understanding of the individuals attributes I was able to tailor my encouragement to allow them grow in their environment".
The impact was a continuous improvement from the site team with a reduction of 33% in issues raised by the client.