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SLC 2019 Q&A: The Secret to Reducing Unsafe Behaviors

Sammy Davis, Papa John's senior director of safety and compliance, will speak about different leadership styles at the 2019 Safety Leadership Conference.

Being a safety leader means cultivating a workplace where engagement impacts the way workers treat unsafe behaviors.

Sammy Davis will bring 31 years of experience to the table at his 2019 Safety Leadership Conference session titled, "Leader Engagement: The Secret to Reducing Unsafe Behaviors."

The senior director of safety and compliance for Papa John's International will offer his take on worker engagement through servant and transformational leadership styles.

Read more about his Safety and Risk Management track session in his Q&A with EHS Today.

EHS Today: Can you offer us a short description of your presentation and describe how it relates to safety leadership?

Davis: The purpose of this workshop is to evoke collaboration around the impact that leader/follower engagement has on reducing unsafe behaviors, utilizing positive reinforcement as a means to motivate and influence newly-formed safe behaviors, and how technology can be used in a culture that promotes "system thinking."  The workshop will offer insight into leader/follower engagement through servant leadership, transformational leadership and leader/member exchange (LMX) styles, provide clear definitions of intrinsic/extrinsic motivation, discuss the power of influence, the mechanisms used to promote positive reinforcement and the importance of having a culture open to system's thinking.


Why is the topic of your presentation of interest to you and why is it important to SLC attendees?

Davis: When Safety leaders gain an understanding of their own leadership style, managing others is much easier and when leaders can work WITH their followers motivating and influencing them in a positive manner, there is a culture shift to a more positive and safe work environment.

What are the takeaways you hope to leave with attendees?


a. Understanding into the leadership styles of Servant, Transformational, and Leader/Member Exchange

b.  Understanding of how to motivate and influence followers to create a safe work environment

c.  Introduction to Ecological Momentary Assessment and Intervention

Please share an example of a personal or professional experience you’ve had related to safety leadership or the topic of your presentation.

Davis: With over 30 years in the health and safety industry there are many examples that could be used to answer this question but the most recent would be the engagement with operations folks to implement an active safety system that focuses on reducing unsafe driving behaviors.

What do you think are some of the most pressing EHS and risk management issues facing corporate leaders and safety professionals in 2019 and beyond?


a.  Understanding when and how to use motivation and influence to change behaviors

b.  Understanding change initiatives in general

c.  Understanding the importance of leader/follower engagement


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