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Keystone Habits

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by John Austin in Behavior change, Leadership, Safety

What are the keystone habits for your company?

At one of our conferences a few years ago, Alasdair Cathcart, then President of Power Operations at Bechtel, said “Safety is the barometer of your business culture.”

When Paul O’Neill took over Alcoa, his first speech started like this… “If you want to understand how Alcoa is doing, you need to look at our workplace safety figures.”

Profits didn’t matter as much as safety. Investors did not like this one bit…and he knew they wouldn’t. But still, he was steadfast in his vision.

And a year later Alcoa profits hit a record high, and within 10 years or so, net revenues had increased 5x.

He did this by focusing on the habits in one key area.

One client I worked with did the same thing for manufacturing operations and now it is currently safer to work in their manufacturing plants than in their offices!

So I ask again, what are the keystone habits for your organization? Do they involve physical safety? Psychological safety? Profits? Customer care? Accountability?

What behaviors are driven by your focus on that keystone habit? Are they all good for your company?

Comment below… I’d love to hear your feedback.

If you want to learn more about this topic and how to use behavioral science to help you create a positive work environment email me or sign up for free leadership resources here:

Thanks for reading!

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