Getting your safety message through when no one cares

No one even looked at him.

He was standing with a clipboard in the middle of a busy airport terminal. He tried to engage with passersby, something about an airport survey.

No one stopped. No one cared.

If you’ve been in the EHS profession for more than a week, you’ve felt this dejection.

Robert Cialdini, author of “Pre-Suasion” and “Influence”, writes about ways to create a space for not only getting people to listen to your message, but also to positively receive it.

Cialdini cites a study where researchers asked people to participate in a marketing study and only 29% said yes. However, when the researchers began with, “Do you consider yourself a helpful person?” the number of volunteers went to 77.3%! The people said yes because of their need to be consistent. If they considered themselves helpful, then (to be remain consistent) they must also say yes to help with the survey.

How could you use this idea in your work?

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