John Maxwell (An American author and speaker) once said “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way” and these very words could not hold more truth when we look at the importance of Senior managers and their influence on driving QHSE management systems.
So Why is Senior management commitment so important? Below are just some of the reasons:
- If Senior Management does not provide the necessary support towards actively promoting the system, then it is not likely to work
- If Managing Directors do not practice what they preach, then why would lower level production staff or labourers comply with procedural requirements?
- Through senior management commitment and action, it provides a sense of truth and integrity to the Quality/Health and Safety and/or Environmental Policy statements
Consequences of a poorly executed level of Management commitment
Your employees must have that incentive and drive to adhere to all QHSE policies and procedures and this is heavily shaped by Senior management. If people should perceive that the most senior managers in the organisation do not have any interest in Customer/OHS/environmental requirements, regulations or laws then why should they, the employees, care?. It is integral that as a Senior management group, there are established communication channels reiterating the significance of compliance and this can be in any form including:
-Documented policies and procedures
Another major negative consequence of poor management commitment is the continuous breakdown of systems as a result of a lack of resources provided for by Senior Management. Without the adequate resources (Human,Physical, Financial, technological), it becomes a nightmare for any organisation to sustain effective implementation of ISO 9001,ISO 14001 or AS/NZS 4801 programs and at best they might be able to just keep their heads above water.
One final such consequence of a lack of management commitment is the resulting poor culture that has the potential to surface within any organisation. Whether any organisation is trying to promote Health and safety or continuous improvement or even a greater awareness of environmental aspects, it is such that impending outcomes on culture are greatly influenced by a proactive drive shown by Senior management towards achieving these outcomes.
The involvement of Top Management just shouldn’t be an optional exercise
There is just no point in wasting your time and money on trying to implement a management system if senior management are going to focus on other priorities. Without the expertise and enthusiasm shown by Top management, the primary objectives of the system implementation such as continual improvement, reduction in incidents,Minimisation of environmental harm or even improvement in Information Security management will never be realized.
Discover more about ISO programs and significance of senior management commitment by contacting Sustainable Certification Today