Graham Hurdle's blog: 5 September 2011 - Is September a new start or more of the same?
05 September 2011
Graham Hurdle is managing director of E-Training World
Like many others I am now back from my two weeks in the sun and busy launching our new driver profiling and combined e-driver training system, whilst at the same time launching a new Australian driver profiling system.
The time prior to my holiday seems a distant memory as I get fully re-emerged in the day to day running of my business, so I thought it would be a good time to take stock. September is the month that kicks off many new things; the kids start a new year at school, the politicians go on their annual jolly, sorry I meant to say annual conferences, and all the road works that could have been done whilst most of us weren't doing the daily commute will be starting.
So with September being the month when we all start to implement our new product, service, or new idea, what can we expect this month in the road safety world?
Well, probably not much. Will the kids be given road safety education in schools? Will the politicians dream up any new initiatives? Will the planned road works finish on time and cause the minimum amount of disruption? The answer to all these questions is, most likely, NO!
When I came into road safety it seemed every week there was a new initiative or big idea that was going to save 100s of lives, but over time all those big ideas and new laws have lost their way. Here are just two examples; we used to have casualty reduction targets, these have now been scrapped - almost certainly because political agendas have overridden public safety. We had the introduction of the Corporate Manslaughter Act. This, we were all led to believe, would force those companies that didn't care about safety, including road safety, to put in place robust risk management policies and procedures. Has it worked? Certainly not yet, because we have yet to see a company prosecuted because they failed to manage occupational road risk.
Sounds like I've returned from holiday feeling cynical doesn't it. But do I see September as being a gloomy month for me and my business? Well actually no, it is a very positive month. We were highly commended in the BusinessCar Techies award, having won the best risk management category for the last two years. Also, enquiries are up, as is new business, with many new companies starting their risk management programmes.
So why are we investing in new products and services and why am I feeling so upbeat? Simply because although many companies are finding investing in on road driver training is not possible, many companies are starting to realise that training is essential if you want to save costs on fuel, reduce vehicle damage and minimise unplanned maintenance. The difference with this recession and those of the past is staff training doesn't have to stop, because with the internet e-learning is proving to be low in cost and very effective, making training possible even in tough times.
My final word regarding my holiday is that the hotel was the best I've ever stayed in. The staff worked as a well oiled machine to provide first class service, this provided a memorable experience for the guests and its management team had clearly invested in staff training and building a good culture within the business. For this reason we would certainly go back and give them our repeat business. The question is whether September should be the time for you to consider training within your business, because by going online it can be far more cost-effective than you'd ever imagine.
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