Workplace safety games for adults are the perfect way of engaging employees in learning and memorizing your safety procedures. Rather than obligating them to sit quietly for a series of dry, hours-long safety training lectures, workplace safety games create a fun and receptive environment for these important messages. Keep reading for workplace safety games ideas that you can try out with your team during QHSE training.
Why Use Games in Safety Programs
Young children learn best through play. When you introduce new concepts in a fun, relaxed and playful manner, they pick up the message much more clearly than in a more regimented and flat delivery. The same works for adults, too, with this memorable training tool allowing them to process complex messages more easily.
When you break up your training days with workplace safety awareness games, you instantly gain employees’ attention in a fun and budget-friendly manner. According to the non-profit mental health website HelpGuide, play for adults helps relieve stress, encourages cooperation with co-workers and improves brain function among many other benefits.
Safety Games Ideas for the Workplace
There are many different types of workplace safety awareness games to choose from. The games you pick depend on your industry, your business and the type of workers that you want to take part in. Here are the categories you can choose from and examples of workplace contest ideas within those categories.
Quizzes are a simple way to discuss workplace safety topics. Everyone gets the concept of this workplace safety game for adults — someone asks a question and you try to answer. You can use a general online health and safety quiz, targeted quizzes based on industry or you can make up your own, business-specific version.
Why not get creative and write the quiz in the style of a TV show like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire using questions about your safety policies? Use some dramatic music and allow collaboration between co-workers for the Phone a Friend and Ask the Audience lifelines.
The advantage of quiz safety games for work is that everyone understands how they work. The downside is that they are not the most exciting to play (unless there is a big prize at stake!).
While talking about how to implement safety procedures, it is sometimes difficult to visualize how a situation would play out in real life. Roleplay helps employees gain an insight into the physical nature of an incident and aids them to prepare for it more confidently.
Ahead of time, create some scenarios that are relevant to your business. It could be a fire on site, a spillage, a co-worker who falls ill or anything else that is a potential hazard in your business. Have enough scenarios backed up to allow all attendees to take part.
This gives you a perfect opportunity to offer constructive advice on dealing with safety hazards. However, it is worth bearing in mind that some people do not perform at their best in front of an audience, so you should consider that in your feedback. They may be much more confident with first-aid kits, for example, in a real emergency than when they are being scrutinized.
There are a number of interactive games you can play to allow everyone to show off their understanding of company safety policies. You could split the trainees into groups and challenge them to come up with the best song about the theme of that particular training session. This allows everyone to get involved, but no one is singled out for scrutiny.
It is also a fun example of teamwork that helps co-workers get to know each other better. Interactive games create bonds that will hopefully continue into the following months and years.
Fun Safety Games
A scavenger hunt is a fun workplace safety game for adults. And, it’s a great way to see how well the team has understood various procedures. You can challenge a team to walk through a safety procedure. At each step, there is a numbered flag to pick up and the team that collects the most flags in the correct order is the winner.
You can adapt this for any emergency, including:
- Hazardous chemical spillage
- Workplace injury
- Fire in the break room
- Bomb alert
- Broken windows
Scavenger Hunt encourages group discussion and helps you to understand which parts of the procedure need more explanation or making clearer in the company QHSE literature.
If you don’t want to make things too complicated, then simple games about workplace safety are great for all types of learners.
Hazard Hunt is very easy to play. You merely find a picture of a workplace and each team attempts to uncover as many hazards, or potential hazards, as they can. The team that spots the most hazards wins.
If you want to make it more interactive, you can even mock up a typical workplace and have the teams walk around on their hazard hunt. However, simply using photographs or illustrations featuring common workplace hazards is an effective game to play in safety training.
Word games are another way of breaking up a training day with something a little different. These easy games do not require much preparation.
You could take well-known safety slogans and jumble up the words into anagrams, which your employees have to decipher.
Here are some examples:
- Tysaef si on denactci – Safety is no accident
- Tsand pu rof fesayt – Stand up for safety
- Nuacoit, drea neth eecdrop – Caution, read then proceed
You can come up with your own anagrams depending on the slogans you use for your business.
This is another workplace safety game for adults that is a lot of fun to play. Each contestant in this word game has a card featuring a different selection of nine safety slogans or topics. The safety bingo caller chooses these slogans or topics at random, with the contestants marking them off as theirs are called out. The winner is the first person to make a line on their card or even achieve the coveted full house!
Puzzles are fantastic for getting the brain working and really concentrating on the task at hand. You could create a crossword or word search, or download some that are already created for you, featuring key words from your safety procedures.
Allowing the learners to spend ten minutes trying to complete as much of the puzzles as possible is a good way of breaking up the day during training. People can only listen for so long at a time before they need a different challenge. So, you will find that breaking out to concentrate on a puzzle will engage your audience more effectively during a training session.
Creative Safety Games
Challenge groups within your safety training to come up with a short skit based around an element of safety in the workplace. You can either give each group a different element or have everyone create a sketch on the same topic and pick the best. You could even film these skits and distribute them around the company as part of your ongoing safety training.
5-Minute Safety Games
Another fun breakout activity and memorable training tool is Safety Charade. You can intersect your training day with a few five-minute rounds of this spin on the popular party game to get people on their feet, moving and having fun. Have some safety topics stored up and encourage learners to act them out to each other.
Safety Games Online
Many training modules are presented online at the moment and that is an excellent way to simulate workplace safety hazards. If you would like your learners to play safety games online Convergence Training, for example, has shared a few games for learning important safety topics. OSHA’s Hazard Identification Training Tool can also be very handy.
Industry-Specific Safety Games
Of course, not all workplace safety awareness games are suitable for all industries. Here are some examples of industry-specific safety games you could implement in your sector:
An assault course, through which they must display the correct way to handle hazardous chemicals.
Warehouse staff must stack the tallest tower of foam cubes possible, using proper lifting techniques
A race to put on the correct PPE in the quickest time, including boots, helmets, gloves, ventilators and more. They must go back to the start if the judge deems they are not wearing the item correctly.
Tips for Selecting the Right Safety Game
When it comes to selecting the right workplace safety game for adults, you need to consider a number of points:
- What type of learners will attend? Those who work more visually, physically or logically?
- What industry do you work in? Some activities will not be appropriate for your sector.
- Do the learners usually work together? You will need to ease them in with some ice breakers if not.
- At what stage in their safety learning are the attendees?
- What is your budget?
- How much time does your team have to prepare workplace safety contest ideas?
- Which hazards do your participants encounter most regularly?
- How long will the training last and how much will be dedicated to safety games?
Ideas for Safety Game Prizes
If you choose to give away safety game prizes, there are a range of options. It depends, of course, on your budget and the number of prizes you want to give away. When looking at safety award ideas, you need consistency. It would not be popular if one team won candy bars and another team won $100 shopping vouchers, for example.
The safety culture of the workplace is important in informing the prizes you give away. In some places, employees are happy just to be recognized with a small trophy, a lottery ticket, some chocolate or some other small token. In other businesses where there is more of a culture of giving, these awards wouldn’t cut through. Instead, you could look at offering cash, extra vacation days, a luxury hamper or something else sizable. So, take these ideas with a grain of salt and use your best judgment.
How do you promote safety in the workplace?
Safety in the workplace begins from the moment the employee clocks on for the first time. You must implement safety protocols from the beginning, and reinforce them at every opportunity. If workers see your company as having safety at its core, they are more likely to be conscientious about following your lead. Safety games are a key part of this, and you can read about more ways to promote safety in the workplace from this list compiled by Concentra.
How Can You Make Safety Fun?
We all learn better when we are enjoying ourselves, and that is why safety games are key to injecting fun into important and essential training. SafeStart has some simple and effective ideas on how to make learning about safety more enjoyable.
More Safety Games Resources
- Safety Week Activities: It can be tough to come up with so many different ideas in advance, so use this example by Smart Service as inspiration on how to mix things up. This is something that originated in the construction industry but who says Safety Week can’t be done in other sectors?
- How to Organize Safety Drills: Creative Safety Supply has a detailed insight into how to organize safety drills in your workplace.
- Workplace Safety Contest Ideas: Magid, the safety product firm, has some great ideas for workplace safety contests.
- Safety Fair Ideas for the Workplace: Planning a safety fair for your workplace? This board on Pinterest has some inspiration for you.
- Safety Talk on Teamwork: Bizfluent has advice and tips on creating a safety talk on teamwork in the workplace.
- Improving Safety Culture in the Workplace