Defining Element 3: Promote and Support Worker Engagement Throughout Program Design and Implementation

Ensure that workers involved in daily operations as well as supervisory staff are engaged in identifying safety and health issues, contributing to program design, and participating in all aspects of program implementation and evaluation. Letting workers be involved in work­place safety, health, and well-being, instead of being just recipients of services, nurtures a shared commitment to Total Worker Health, as presented in the first Defining Element.

Participatory approaches are a key tenet of the TWH model for designing safer and health­ier jobs. Encouraging workers to participate in a structured process for identifying issues and concerns and for developing, implementing, and evaluating programs [Robertson et al. 2013] helps to

  • Identify safety and health issues that are most important to front-line employees
  • More effectively identify potential barriers to program use and effectiveness
  • Improve the long-term sustainability of initiatives
  • Increase employee buy-in and participation in policies and other interventions.