Questions to Ask Before a Work Task

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Questions to Ask Before a Work Task (Safety Talk)

There are many questions that we need to ask or answer throughout a work day to get a job accomplished. The same can be said for working safely. There are many different questions we can ask ourselves and the other individuals involved in a work task to ensure we are working safely.

Examples of Questions to Ask

Prior to starting a work task we should be running through checklists- whether it is an actual physical checklist or a mental checklist. No matter if the checklist is a physical one or a mental one, there is often a set of questions that need answered to double check that everything is in line prior to work beginning. Some examples of questions that can be asked:

  • Do I understand the work task?
  • Do I understand the hazards associated with the work?
  • What can injure me?
  • Do I have the necessary training needed for the task?
  • Is all associated paperwork completed?
  • Do I have all the tools needed to do the job?
  • Are the right personnel involved in the task?

Human Performance Questions

There are also other questions to ask yourself regarding you and your state of mind prior to a task beginning. It is important to do a self-check to ensure you are able to complete your work to the best of your ability as well as safely as possible. Some questions to ask yourself:

  • Am I stressed?
  • Is my focus on the work task?
  • Is fatigue, medication, or illness affecting my work?

What to do with the Answers

Asking these questions serves no purpose if you do not follow through with the information that comes from them. For example, if you find a deficiency in the paperwork needed to complete the work task then you need to stop work and get the necessary paperwork completed before proceeding. When completing a self-check, if you find that your focus is not on the task how can you fix it? Is it a simple phone call home before starting the task to get peace of mind? Is it changing the work area so that you are more easily able to focus on the work task? Regardless of the issue, find a solution prior to beginning work.

Discussion point:

-What other questions are important to help us work safely?

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