Would your employees know how to respond instinctively to a terror threat or active shooter situation?

Like him or not, President Trump knows how to get people talking. Since his headline-making executive order on January 27 to ban travelers and refugees from 7 majority-Muslim countries, everyone from the average Joe to business and world leaders are all weighing in daily with their thoughts, questions, and ideas about terrorism.

The sad thing is that terror threats as well as other malicious attacks are a reality in today’s world. And it’s a top concern for many of the organizations we work with. Conversations about workplace safety used to be limited to slips, trips and falls. Or maybe hazardous materials. But, today, the definition is much broader. Everything from preparing for emergencies to terrorism threats to workplace shootings to hazardous materials delivery needs to be part of the dialogue.

Probably the biggest growing threat to employee safety is violence in the workplace. Check out the FBI’s study of Active Shooter incidents in the United States between 2000 and 2013 and you’ll see that 70 percent of incidents happened in a commerce/business or educational environment and took place in 40 out of 50 states.

These active shooter rampages are also augmented by acts of terrorism. And according to a report called, The American Face of ISIS, this issue is closer to home than people often realize. The report states that two thirds of those who perpetrated an attack between March 2014 and August 2016, were born in the United States and 20 percent were naturalized citizens.

This is pretty frightening stuff! And, while it’s important to avoid scaremongering, clearly it’s more crucial than ever for organizations to take proactive measures to ensure that, wherever possible, violent incidents can be pre-empted. The next best thing is to prepare employees about how to respond when threats do happen. And the most effective way to do this is through continual employee training.

More and more organizations are using regular training to teach employees how to handle threats or even survive an attack. Hotels have been placing an emphasis on terror awareness training for some time now, and up to 600,000 London workers could be given training on how to deal with a terror attack. Renowned US retailer, Bloomingdales, also instituted Active Shooter training in response to a threat against a threat on Times Square in New York City.

But employee training won’t work if it’s delivered only once. Imagine if you were at work, and someone came in with a gun and started shooting. If you attended Active Shooter training 9 months ago, how much would you remember in the heat of the moment?

The key to delivering the safety knowledge that people will keep top of mind is to reinforce that knowledge on an ongoing basis. Not yearly. Monthly might not even be frequent enough. Your employees need to be able to act immediately in the event of a situation, not freeze in fear. This means that the knowledge and practices must be ingrained, and constantly top of mind.

When you use a learning solution that offers daily microlearning and brain science practices that help to boost memory, you can easily and cost-effectively deliver that refresher training as often as you need to ensure critical safety information stays top of mind. And, like Bloomingdales, you can quickly ramp up employee training in the event of an imminent threat. The goal is to help your employees acquire and remember the knowledge they need to stay as safe as possible.

For more information about how to provide daily training to your employees that will help them keep safety and other priority topics top of mind, read our White Paper: Microlearning – Small Bites. Big Impact.

As a process person, she loves nothing more than taking a business and transforming it from obscure to renowned and beyond. She takes the reins on Axonify’s strategic marketing efforts that put the company on the map.

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