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Skills of HSE professional

Source | LinkedIn : By Salim Solanki

  • Interpersonal skills – Techniques such as reflective listening and appropriate self-disclosure can make a real difference. If you cannot get on well with people your technical OHS skills will go to waste.
  • Communications skills – The biggest and commonest mistake is written communications that rave on to many pages, succinct written communications is the way to go. Not much use having a great message if you cannot get it across.
  • Leadership – Some people say leaders are born, not made, I do not know about this but do know learning programs can enhance leadership abilities. The number 1 job of a leader is to transmit and embed high value standards. In modern business shared leadership is of more relevance than individual leadership.
  • Get your priorities right – Recognise safety never has been and never will be the number one priority (you can say it all you want but is it – really?), safety must be fully integrated into other business functions with equal priority for all are interdependent and none can thrive without the other.
  • Humility – Be humble and recognise the knowledge and worth of the front line worker, they are the only ones who know how things really happen
  • Broad thinking – Think outside the square and challenge the status-quo
  • Legislation – Recognise that while compliance with legislation is important it is only a minimum standard
  • Pareto Principle – Remember the Pareto Principle, the 80/20 rule, identify the 20% of things you do that give you 80% of your results and concentrate on them
  • A commitment to a continuous improvement philosophy and ability to implement Quality Management.
  • Change management – OHS management is all about change management and generic skills can be learnt.
  • OHS technical skills – Tertiary training is important but practical experience and critical reflection on practice is vital. Practical experience not only in safety but in management and getting your hands dirty
  • Auditing – Well developed auditing questions are the important first step.
  • Project management – OHS lends itself very well to a project management approach for major change.
  • Learning – Avoid the lecture, use Adult Learning Principles & Process and promote interactive approaches and avoid “Death by Power-Point”
  • Team-building skills – These essential skills can be learnt
  • Time management skills – Relatively easy to learn this
  • Sharing – “People support what they create” Not involving the workforce in decisions about OHS change is the road to disaster.
  • Well developed bull-dust detector!

Read On…

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