Happy people happy workplace was the underlying theme for this year’s Safety Stand Down April 14 at White Sands Missile Range.
“It turns out fun is related to safety. Being happy is quality of life and wellness of being,” said Brad Montgomery, the motivational speaker at this year’s event. “When we make ourselves happy we are better in every single metric there is. Taking care of each other and taking care of ourselves is so much easier when you’re happy.”
Safety Stand Down day focused on increasing the workforce’s happiness in order to increase morale and reduce safety hazards. The day of events began at the WSMR Post Theater and moved over to the Middle School and Teen Center.
Montgomery provided a fun and interactive introduction to this year’s events. According to Montgomery, happiness plays a major role in our day to day lives. Montgomery said lack of happiness costs the U.S. $500 billion a year and happy people, on average, sell or produce 25 percent more than unhappy people.
“I think all of us underestimate our influence,” Montgomery said. “You guys count. Don’t underestimate your influence. You need to accept the fact that you’re important.”
Montgomery emphasized the importance of understating that items cannot bring you happiness.
“Thinking that things or events make you happy is not true, it’s fleeting. If we’re going to try to make ourselves happy it’s going to take something more than a Ferrari,” Montgomery said. “Happiness is a choice, happiness is an attitude. Happiness is something we select.”
He introduced four techniques to lead a happier life; pick happy, find happy, lead happy, and act happy. Montgomery said no matter what profession you’re in, the position you hold is important and valuable, especially when working on a weapons testing range.
“You’re waiting for someone else to build you up. Forget it. You’re strong enough to be the one to do it,” Montgomery said.
WSMR Executive Director Paul Mann welcomed Montgomery to WSMR. Mann talked about the importance of safety even in an office setting. Mann shared an incident he experienced with a calendar that left him with a gash in his forehead and a visit to the McAfee Health clinic.
“We’re going to have a blast, but it’s a serious topic,” Mann said.
WSMR Senior Safety Specialist Sammie Hubbard was the master of ceremonies at the opening ceremony.
“We’re going to have a very exciting Safety Day today whether you like it or not,” Hubbard said.
The events shifted over to the Middle School and Teen Center after the opening remarks. Shuttles were available for employees to MST from Building 100. At the Middle School and Teen Center several safety, environmental organization, and protective equipment companies had booth displays and were on hand to answer questions and provide information and freebies.
This was Materiel and Test Directorate Data Collector Elizabeth Camarillo’s first time attending a Safety Stand Down since working at WSMR for three years. Camarillo said she’s always missed Safety Stand Down events due to travel required for her job. She said she enjoyed learning about safety equipment and preparedness after visiting several booths. Camarillo said she will be taking some of the emergency preparedness information home for her family.
“It’s required to attend but I really want to know more about (safety),” Camarillo said. “I think it’s really interesting. There’s a lot of neat stuff I wasn’t aware of.”
After the events at MST ended at 1p.m., employees were encouraged to attend several training sessions that were being offered by safety specialists.