Safety messages need to be effective for people to understand, to remember and to comply. If you really hit the jackpot with your messaging, you can also make your audience into advocates.
In this three-part blog on messaging we look at what you say – and how you say it. How we frame those messages makes a difference to how people relate to them.
Managing drivers – how to get the message across
So when it comes to managing drivers, what should safety messages be about?
Provide a powerful why. Psychological studies show that people need reasons so strongly that if we are not given credible rationales, we invent our own. The better the reason provided, the more likely we are to comply.
Make it about your values, including service, caring, protection, quality and professionalism. Create a connection between the values drivers relate to in their core activity and that value in driving.
Make it about them. You are responsible for their driver welfare. You need them safe, and their families need them safe.
Make it about you too. “I want to sleep at night. I never want to have to ring your partner and say: he’s not coming home.”
Make it about a sense of ownership. Drivers are more careful with their own vehicles than what they perceive to be disposable or anonymous corporate assets. This can be as simple as a monthly prize for the best kept van, or a league table for spotless handovers.
Make it about happiness. “Good driving makes your job less stressful.” Light footed driving, giving yourself space and time to respond, is more relaxing and a more enjoyable experience.
Make it about sanctuary. “Make driving your safe space.” Driving can be a mindfulness exercise. No pressure, no phones, no multi-tasking – just breathe and know that for this journey you have nothing to do but drive.