Ergonomics is a buzz word when walking onsite with any type of work force. As we get older our bodies allow us to compensate without cost less and less. This prompts some type of evaluation where we assess how we are walking, standing or even holding a pencil and deem that this small instance is why our lower back hurts. Excellent you have run your calculations, used fancy algorithms to come to some type of assessment or even a well thought out solution. But the big question is how do you take analytical data and transfer it into everyday life of your typical journey man lineman? In an ever changing world, it seems no matter where you go in the country with this workforce time has stand still. Technology has increased efficiency and the safety of the job, but it's still the same good olé' boy gang going out into the eye of the storm to sacrifice their time and lives so others can have the comforts of home in all conditions.
So how do you break into this tightly knit group of guys where trust is as valuable as bringing home a paycheck? It starts with a relationship. Seems simple, or the obvious answer but at these different locations it is the most misunderstood concept. Health and Safety programs come and go, with some having mediocre substance and missing the mark to say the least. The only way to create change within these workforces of tradition and a "brother hood" mentality is to become one of them. Get out in the field with them at the early hours of the morning, learn what they do daily and help them with an outsider's perspective. Once you gain these individuals trust and are accepted into the "club" that's when the real fun starts.
Working with such a diverse population, we as providers need to remember two simple rules:
Trust and consistency trump knowledge and number every time.
Change doesn't start inside on a computer but, 20 feet up in a bucket.
In this discussion, you will be provided with an outsider's perspective on Ergonomic interventions. The idea is that intrinsic and extrinsic factors can work synergistically to formulate change.