Die bestuur van die produktiwiteit veiligheid dilemma by 'n goudmyn
Van Wyngaard, Johannes Jurie
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In early December 2007, tens of thousands of gold mine workers in South Africa downed tools to protest against the safety standards of their industry. The strike action caused major losses for the gold mining industry and brought the dangerous working conditions endured by miners to public attention once again. As the first national walkout by miners since the dismantling of apartheid, the strike signifies mass employee dissent that the gold mining industry cannot afford to take lightly. The gold mining industry must now manage the dilemma that it places increased productivity before safety. Productivity should be the key to showing how safety makes money. Stated simply, there's a direct link between safety and productivity. When safety improves, productivity increases; when safety decreases, productivity declines. Any industry worth its salt should understand the value of productivity and its impact on safety performance. So linking safety to productivity is almost guaranteed to capture management's attention. Of course, its one thing to assert that safety requires productivity to succeed, and another to prove it. The difficulty is clear, gold mining companies need to manage the dilemma of safety and productivity, and problem solving methods alone cannot work when dealing with this critical issue. This study attempted to address the dilemma of safety and productivity through applying the polarity management perspective.