If you are looking to start a career as a safety professional, there are skills that you will need to meet the job’s expectations. Although every organization has different needs, they establish their health and safety protocols on base skills. Mastery of these skills is essential to ensuring the work environment’s health and safety. Prepare yourself accordingly to effectively forge a career path in this profession.
Identify Health and Safety Hazards
One of your main responsibilities is to identify hazards throughout the work environment. Improve how you find health hazards and safety risks by adopting these practices into your routine.
- Investigate: Study past accidents and determine their exact causes. This will give you better insight on how to develop effective and long-lasting solutions.
- Observe: Walk through the workplace to familiarize yourself with the environment. Most reports will leave out information that you can help you in identifying risks and hazards.
- Listen: Talk to employees and get their opinions on potential risks and hazards. They can give you valuable information on how to improve health and safety in the workplace.
Learn Industry Standards
In addition to your organization’s health and safety protocols, you will have to be knowledgeable about those provided by regulatory organizations. Cryogenic tank maintenance, for example, will likely need professional services. Leaving this task to an employee that lacks the proper training can lead to an accident and a hefty fine from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Improve Verbal and Visual Communication
As a safety professional, you will need to communicate your findings to the entire organization. When you lack the right communication skills, it can lead to bigger problems in the future.
- Verbal: Use precise language when communicating health hazards and safety risks to management and employees. Make sure everyone understands these dangers even if they are not directly affected by them.
- Visual: Utilize the appropriate warning signs to alert employees of potential dangers. Use high-visibility materials to make sure employees can see them even from a distance. Keep the images and instructions simple to prevent confusion.
Improve Data Gathering and Interpretation
As mentioned, you will need to investigate past accidents to prevent them in the future. Improve your data gathering skills to streamline your process. This will also help you in interpreting data as you receive new information. How you manage data is essential to your ability in developing the appropriate solutions to improve health and safety in the organization.
Accept and Teach Accountability
Accidents in the workplace can happen any time, even with safety protocols in place. As a safety officer, you will need to take responsibility for these, regardless of the cause. Additionally, you need to hold the right people accountable for their mistakes. Otherwise, they are prone to making the same mistakes and causing more accidents in the future.
Starting a career as a safety professional entails several responsibilities. It can be daunting since it deals with people’s health and safety. But if you’re sure about this decision, it’s a matter of acquiring and mastering the necessary skill set.