Today I want to talk about the meerkat principle and it goes by other names. It's not my original idea. It's derived off of a lesson I learned from the Marine Corps.
In the Marine Corps we'd go on these hikes, we would call them humps and you'd have your pack on your back and you know, we'd walk in certain formations and one of the things they taught us was every four steps, you should just look over your shoulder like that. And what you're looking for is to make sure the guy behind you is still there. Any guesses why? Well, it's because if there's a sniper who's picking people off, they're not going to start from the front of the line because if the guy in front falls down, everyone knows something's wrong. Right? If the sniper is trying to take people out, he's going to start from the back.
So you're looking back, not necessarily even for the guy behind you. You're looking back to make sure that you don't get shot. Right? And if he's not there, there's something wrong. But it all comes down to situational awareness. And that's, that's what the meerkat rule is all about. So meerkats are these funny little animals that will constantly be vigilant to look for predators, to look for hazards and they have all these little calls to let each other know what's going on. And they do a really good job at paying attention and having good situational awareness.
And so how you can apply this in the workplace is, you can get into the habit of every so often stopping for, just to look around just to see if there's any hazards in your environment. This is also known as the 30, 30, 30 rule. But I like to call it the meerkat principle. And also I think meerkats are cute. Sooo. But if you identify a hazard in your work environment, you can let each other know and you can keep each other safe. You can be your brother's keeper. And that's what being a meerkat's all about. And that's really what safety's all about. It's about preventing injuries, being your brother's keeper, and maintaining situational awareness.