How do I conduct a Toolbox Talk?

How do I conduct a Toolbox Talk?


A toolbox talk is a valuable safety tool whereby important health and safety issues can be communicated to the workforce and they can give their feedback - such as safety concerns or improvements. It therefore needs to be well prepared and engaging.


First of all, explain why you are having a toolbox talk on a particular topic. Perhaps a recent near miss or observation highlighted a safety issue.

Ensure you prepare what you are going to talk about. Make sure any handouts or equipment being used are suitable for the audience (the attendees of the toolbox talk). It will be up to you to decide the best way to communicate the toolbox talk to your audience. If you are using digital media ensure it will work in the location of the toolbox talk (suitable Wi-Fi, cable connections, power sockets, etc.). It could be that a flip chart and pens may be the best way to communicate the message of the toolbox talk and images can be effective too.

It’s prudent to keep a record of who attended each toolbox talk so you can follow up with anyone not present, ideally get the attendees to sign to acknowledge their attendance and understanding.

Get feedback on the toolbox talk. Ask the attendees what they thought about it. Each time you do a toolbox talk and learn from the previous one it will be easier, quicker and more effective.

Finally, and arguably most importantly, act on any suggestions from the attendees. Even if it’s not practicable to implement an idea, let them know why. If it seems that you’re not addressing their concerns they are unlikely to be engaged in future toolbox talks.


For more information on toolbox talks and how you can prepare for these, call Steve on 0844 8797286.

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