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Friday, February 24, 2012

40 years with OSHA

What are your thoughts? Are workers in US businesses safer after 40 years of OSHA protection? Watch a video created by OSHA and see if you agreee. Here is the link.

It is our hope that workers are indeed safer today. Thank you OSHA for the job you do.
We especially thank you for the Voluntary programs you offer. See the link below:

Link to OSHA Home Page

Top 10 Standards Violated in 10-1-10 to 9-30-11

How do you stack up with your Safety programs? 
Thank you to every Safety representative in the businesses we serve worldwide!
God Bless You!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Reflections of 2010

Welcome everyone. Just a few thoughts as we retire 2010.  How many times do you think you have heard the phrase "Economic Downturn" over the last 3 to 4 years?  How about, "Do more with less"?  Aren't you sick of it? 

In Iowa, our unemployment numbers have dropped this month below 6%.  The DesMoines newspaper put a little story on the bottom of the front page 2 columns wide and 3 inches high.  If that was a company laying off their workers it would have been front page lead story that would have taken up over half of the front page. They would have gone over every negative detail of the bad news. 

I say, let's focus on the positive. Why aren't we more thankful for the 94% of our workforce that still have their jobs. That is a good thing. Build on that! Oh, I know it is very bad for the people that are out of work and I am not wanting to make light of their difficulties but I am sure that they would agree that it is easier to find work when there is a more positive environment around them.

I feel that the press has caused a lot of fear in the US and I feel that they should have to write letters of apology to every person that has had a hard time.  If the press could learn to make a big deal out of good news we would all be a lot better off. 

Even the entertainment industry gets on this negative kick and you will hear that same line, "With the economy the way it is" coupled with some way that it has negatively affected some character in their show.  Please Stop!  Snap out of it America.  Let's start seeing the good!

What do you think?  Share your thoughts on this.

I know trainer's and Safety professionals are very optomistic as a rule.  If we could just get the bean counters to back away from the trumped up fears and let the trainer's do their jobs, their company's bottom line would be a lot better. It always pays off to train. Well trained workers are a lot safer on the job. They are also a lot happier.  

Whenever companies let it be known that they do not care about their workers as much as they care about their investors and their dollars, the economy as a whole suffers.
I see 2012 as a year when it all turns around.  The people at the top are going to see that they have to have their worker's needs first.

These are just a few thoughts I have on the past and a few hopes for the future. 

Let me know your thoughts.  I am here to listen.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Streaming videos online is a popular idea among trainers today. Is the supplyline keeping up with the demand?

With the internet becoming so popular. A lot of trainer's today are thinking in terms of using streaming videos online to train their employees.  Are the producer's able to keep up with this new demand?  The problem is that we have a lot of existing product that has to get used before we can start creating new training videos to hit new topics. 

At ICON, we are prepared to set you up with a cost-effective program using our existing videos so that we can prove a market for newly released training programs.  When you have a minute, why not brain storm with me to see what we can do together to help chart the course for tomorrows new videos.

I look forward to talkig with you.  We have others that are giving us a try. Why don't you?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Exciting times for the training profession!

We are truly living in exciting times for training professionals. The Supply line for training materials is expanding all the time.

The fastest growth is in delivery methods. With all the new technology, there are multitudes of ways to deliver your training message. Here, at ICON, we are staying abreast of all of these methods. We have the tried and true VHS tapes; DVDs; CD-Rom interactive; Streaming video files; Streaming files for smart phones; Video on Demand; Pay-Per-View; It is incredible.

We can even supply you with pieces of our proprietary videos for you to use in your own interactive courses. Do you need authoring software? No problem, We can help with that too. All you have to do is tell us how you are wanting to deliver your training. We can prepare a proposal for your project and are ready, right away, to go to work on your project.

If you are dreaming up your next Training course, call us today 800-609-04790, to see what we would recommend that will help. Let your creative juices flow!

ICON, we are ready with ideas, concepts, innovations and even, (on occasion) some Whitty inventions.   Have a great day!

Friday, December 17, 2010

New Training Tool coming from Australia.

News Flash! There is a new invasion taking place in the US. It involves the delivery of safety training videos to employees in a revolutionary new way.

OK, are you ready? Buckle up; let’s take a short ride down memory lane. Look where training has come from. During our time in the training profession, many of us, have gone from using 16mm movies with an old (wore out) clumsy projector. We have said things like, “Oops I just blew a bulb at the worst possible moment”. “Does anybody here know how to thread the film through this projector?” “Now I have to set up the speakers.” “Where is that screen? I swear it has 4 legs and runs off just when I need it the most.”

What a relief it was when VHS came along. We all welcomed the change because VHS was much more user friendly. At least you didn’t have to thread the machine and the TV was easier to find than a projector and screen. This medium worked real well until technology moved things up a notch and we all had to learn new phrases like: CBT, DVD, PowerPoint Presentations, and of course the internet. I know one thing, my 8 year old son was able to operate the equipment as soon as I opened the box, but me, I was still reading the instruction book.

Don’t get me wrong, once we caught up to technology and knew what we were doing, training with some of these tools made things a whole lot easier. Thank goodness.

Well, I have some more good news for you. VOCAM Group in Australia is invading the US with yet another new training method. It has already taken Australia, the UK and Canada by storm. Now it has come to our own back yard. With this new twist in technology, all we have to do is turn on our laptops and bring up a handy “Safety-TV player” that will play the videos for us without even using the internet for delivery.


The best news is that it is a lot more cost effective. Without going into too much of the mechanics, I can tell you this, with this handy player, you can play Digital videos that you have already loaded onto your Laptop or Desktop computer without any fuss. You can print out quizzes to test for retention and document who took the training all from your player on your computer. Play the videos for individuals or for groups, it doesn’t matter.

At present VOCAM has 2 separate DVD’s that you insert into your DVD drive and you can load 55 digital videos right into the player in your computer. You will also be able to download each new Safety Training video title VOCAM produces right to your player as they are released. They are planning on producing 4 to 5 new training videos (specific to the US market) each year. You can even have your company Logo inserted into your player so everyone knows the training is your own.

You get all these benefits available for an affordable (very cost effective) annual Leasing fee. Who knows where training will go in the future. For now, this is beyond belief. We have certainly come a long ways, haven’t we!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Streaming Safety

We are now making the ICON and ERI Safety Training videos available on a special website we call Streaming Safety.

With this Subscription plan, clients can lease safety video titles for 1 year. There is a low annual fee for each video we upload to your access point. For the full length videos the fee is $225 each. For the Concise videos (under 10 minutes) the fee is only $125.00 each. We also offer discounts from these fees for multiple titles.

What an incredibly good way to train employees with the newest and most effective tools in the business at an affordable rate, right over the web.

We are truly living in exciting times. With all of the new delivery methods we now offer, Trainers have so many great options for training their employees. I am so pleased to be a part of this Safety Training world!

It is our hope at ICON, that we are having a real impact on the safety of your workers. If you need to discuss what delivery plan is best for your situation, Please contact us right away.

If you are on LinkedIn look us up. Several of our clients and suppliers have recommended our services. See what they have to say about ICON. We are here to serve you. We would love to be linkedIn with you.

God Bless!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Accident, What Accident?

How many of us would be willing to have an accident if we knew it was going to happen. The thing is we do not know when accidents will happen. They are not intentional, they happen by accident.

Go ahead, try to plan an accident. You can't because if you planned to have it, it was intentional, not by accident. This is just a play on words, but I hope it gets you to thinking ahead just a bit.

In the News in Iowa... 8-11-2010... Near Altoona Iowa. It was about about 4:00 AM, a precious young soul was from taken this life totally by accident. There was no way to know this would ever happen. How could you ever plan for it or know what was up ahead?

This young lady was just headed out with some friends to go to a home in a neighboring community. The rain was coming down so hard. The windshield wipers were likely slapping the windshield but to no avail. I sure it was nearly impossible to see anything but rain in the downpour in the dark.

Suddenly, without any warning at all. 3 cars suddenly go out of control and get swept off of the road by the current caused by the newly formed river. Things were spinning, swirling. Someone had the presence of mind to take their cell phone and make a desperation call for help to 911. After the water got so high in the floating cars, the caller did not know what to say. By the time the 911 operator answered it was pure panic. All you can hear is several young teens trying to find a way to save themselves.

As my wife and I watched the news report in disbelief, we could feel the pain of each teen when listening for the caller to say something, anything about the nature of the emergency. What was the emergency call concerning? There were screams and cries for help as we heard the passengers trying to find something to grab onto to stop the uncontrolled rush down the raging stream.

I can only imagine what was going through the 911 dispatcher's mind. Now, all of a sudden click and the call is dropped. Oh, what a time for the signal to be lost. Thanks to the quick thinking and rapid response by the Polk County Sheriff's personnel they were able to trace the cell phone by GPS to find the precise location of the tragic disaster. (Thank God for GPS) Due to their heroics no other lives were lost this day.

Our hearts go out to the family of this young 16 year old girl. May God, increase His Grace to you at this time as you mourn tragic loss of your precious little girl. much of Iowa mourns with you!

We all need to learn from this.

We always need to be ready. You never know!!! Accidents happen suddenly. Are you certain that you will see tomorrow? You just never know.

Please let us know if this story speaks to your heart.
Enjoy your life, It is a gift from God! Stay Safe!

Rick McGrath
ICON Training Materials of Iowa, Inc.