Original Research

Small business success: Identifying safety hazards and safety risks

Elriza Esterhuyzen, Leonie B. Louw
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 11, No 1 | a767 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v11i1.767 | © 2019 Elriza Esterhuyzen, Leonie B. Louw | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 October 2018 | Published: 19 August 2019

About the author(s)

Elriza Esterhuyzen, Department of Operations Management, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa
Leonie B. Louw, Department of Operations Management, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

The establishment and growth of the small businesses in South Africa is of vital importance for economic stability and progress in the economy. A key small business management skill comprises occupational health and safety management, with particular reference to the proper identification of safety hazards and safety risks. This conceptual article set out to identify current perceptions about the concepts of safety, safety risks and safety hazards in the workplace while also identifying and analysing misconceptions regarding safety hazards. This article reports on a secondary data analysis of relevant literature on safety hazards and safety risk and the role thereof on small business success. The structure and functioning of the interrelated characteristics of safety hazards were visualised, with the objective of allowing small business owners or managers to understand how safety hazards contribute to safety risks. Proper identification of safety hazards and safety risks, along with adequate protection measures, allows for improved productivity and a reduction in operational costs. Safety hazards in the workplace, encompassing the functional and structural characteristics, such as humans and machinery, should be noted by small business owners, as applicable to all types of businesses. This article may serve as a catalyst for small business success through growth and sustainability by implementing enhanced safety management practices based on an accurate identification and analysis of safety hazards and safety risks. It allows for the identification and proactive mitigation of safety hazards and safety risks in all types of small businesses.

Keywords

safety hazards; safety risks; safety management; small business management; entrepreneurship; risk management

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