Siemens Wind Power: Zero Harm – how an industrial giant proved it cared

Thom Dinsdale
M&C Saatchi London

Summary

Any organisation can effectively buy in an attitude to health and safety. They can equally easily shout about that, and issue directives in internal communications. However, thanks to insight created by strategic planning, Siemens Wind Power was able to do much more than that.

Siemens employees are some of the best trained in the world, yet accidents were still happening. After much searching, it turned out that this was because of the pressure to meet commercial deadlines. A visceral campaign built around the idea that "you are our most precious resource", and a promise to protect those who stopped work because of health and safety concerns, was deployed to tackle this.

Shifting the strategic focus away from the behaviour of individuals to address wider cultural issues represented a fundamental shift in corporate policy, gave employees the permission they needed to act safely at all times, and demonstrated absolutely the degree to which the company valued them.

The most boring brief in the world?