Safety in the workplace should remain one of the key concerns in the construction industry due to the high rates of exposure to imminent physical danger for construction workers. However, in the case of the Truss Construction Shop, safety issues appear to have been ignored, which has led to the injury of the crane operator and the resulting drop in the company’s performance and reputation. However, approaching the situation from other angles will show that Truss Construction Shop has suffered damage to its reputation not only because of the incident but also due to the lack of what would seem as an adequate public and corporate response to the incident in question.
Since Truss Construction Shop has failed to publicly acknowledge the problem in its quality assurance and management, as well as introduce immediate actions for removing the specified issues with the following report to the media, the company will need a drastic change in its values, organizational management strategy, and public relations in order to stay afloat in the construction industry setting.
Explanation of the Issue
On the surface, the issue under consideration appears to be quite simple. Namely, the mismanagement of the quality management and assurance processes has caused the crane operator to be subjected to severe injury by a steel beam. However, on further assessment of the problem, one will see that the Truss Construction Shop has made a series of errors in handling the situation, which made its internal problems surface. For instance, the lack of focus on building a safer setting and revisiting the existing safety standards indicates that Truss Construction Shop’s priorities may be misaligned (Nuninger, 2016).
Moreover, the fact that Truss Construction Shop has not made any changes to its quality assurance process also signifies that the organization has problems managing its production and lacks the understanding of how to maintain a proper public image and engage in positive public relations. Finally, the fact that a significant amount of the company’s private information regarding the accident, as well as its internal conflicts, has been leaked, with two of its members being involved in the disclosure, shows that the Truss Construction Shop has evident problems in its human resource management (HRM), as well as the promotion of corporate values and the management of organizational data.
Analysis of the Information
The facts provided in the case of Truss Construction Shop show that the company has failed to address its quality assurance and the promotion of proper organizational values and standards, including the principles of integrity and corporate loyalty. Indeed, the accident shows that the quality management stage during the manufacturing process has not been completed properly, resulting in a defective item that caused the injury of the crane operator. Moreover, the data leakage and the resulting inability of the organization to manage its PR proves that its corporate values have not been popular with its staff, showing their refusal to accept integrity and loyalty to the firm (Nuninger, 2016). Arguably, the former issue could be seen as the direct effect of the latter since poor quality management may stem from the staff members’ unwillingness to perform properly.
Additionally, the problem of corporate data disclosure by former and current staff members points to the need for Truss Construction Shop to manage the legal aspect of its performance more carefully. Namely, the company’s data privacy should be protected with the help of legal documents that guarantee the company’s safety from its information being leaked and imposing legal repercussions and fines on those that disclose Truss Construction Shop’s information without being granted permission to do so (Nuninger, 2016). Therefore, the issue of legal protection also needs to be addressed at Truss Construction Shop.
Finally, apart from the described concerns, Truss Construction Shop will also need to learn how to perform damage control in its PR and manage its communication process. At first glance, the approach that the Truss Construction Shop adopted when handling the situation from the PR perspective seems appropriate, with the company issuing an official statement regarding the incident and focusing on bettering itself. However, after closer analysis of this statement, one will observe certain issues with how it was delivered and what impression it produced. For instance, the official statement released by Truss Construction Shop appears to be general to the point where it could be rendered emotionally empty and nearly meaningless. In its clarification of the incident, Truss Construction Shop should have listed the key steps that it had undertaken to address the problem and prevent further instances of safety breaches from occurring in the workplace (Nuninger, 2016).
Moreover, details regarding the reimbursement for the injury and the medical bills for the employee who suffered as a result of the safety breach should have been elaborated on in the press release as well. Finally, the company should have emphasized the importance of its corporate values in the context of safety management, thus, proving that it has a strong basis for addressing the current concerns.
Analysis of Alternative Viewpoints, Conclusions, or Solutions
Despite the obvious need to address the damage that the reputation of Truss Construction Shop has suffered, the current steps for reducing the backlash that the firm is likely to face in the media appear to be unsubstantiated. Specifically, the idea of controlling media and ensuring that no negative data would be released in regard to the incident seems to be futile for two essential reasons. First, the organization does not hold enough power to secure control over every single media outlet; second, the recent instances of data leakage mentioned in the case indicate that these attempts are likely to be pointless.
Therefore, an alternative solution should be pursued, namely, the focus on communication with the target stakeholders. The opportunity to promote transparency, thus, gaining the trust of key stakeholders and general audiences is the primary advantage of the selected approach (Nuninger, 2016). However, given the number of resources required for increased positive media exposure, the introduction of safety-related improvements may take longer to achieve.
Another solution that Truss Construction Shop could adopt concerns working actively on the improvement of its safety strategy while releasing short reports regarding the progress and the improvements in securing the safety of key stakeholders (Nuninger, 2016). The suggested solution is beneficial due to the opportunity to remove the immediate threat to the well-being of staff members. However, the lack of opportunities to provide a full account of the progress in media may lead to misrepresentation of the organization.
Personal Conclusion and Suggestions for Remedying the Situation
It seems that the lack of focus on workplace ethics and the importance of adhering to the corporate code of conduct and ethical standards is the core issue that has led to the accident in the first place. Specifically, without indifferent and careless attitudes, the quality assurance department would not have overlooked an obvious flaw in the truss construction. Therefore, reinforcing the corporate ethics and quality requirements, with the inclusion of repercussions and fines for failing to adhere to them, seems to be the most important first step toward future progress.
Alongside the introduction of new quality assurance standards, the organization will need to focus on the management of its PR and the public opinion of its actions. Instead of the current attempt at blocking every negative review of the organization, Truss Construction Shop will need to revisit its framework for maintaining a media presence. Specifically, the use of social media as a means of informing the target audience about the company’s decisions and the ethical principles behind them should be considered a possible solution (Nuninger, 2016). Thus, the organization will retain its integrity, gaining the respect and support of the target audiences.
Since the problem observed at Truss Construction Shop should be linked not only to poor quality control but to greater underlying issues such as the lack of focus on safety and compliance with the existing standards in staff members, the organization will need to start by revisiting its approach toward corporate values promotion and HRM. As soon as the employees internalize Truss Construction Shop’s principles of safety and integrity, the issue of information leakage and quality concerns will be addressed. Afterward, the problem of PR will need to be handled by creating a strong communication channel with the target audiences on social media. Thus, Truss Construction Shop will be able to escape the current predicament.
Nuninger, W. (Ed.). (2016). Handbook of research on quality assurance and value management in higher education. IGI Global.