What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?
Some people assume that safety is easy and that anyone can do it. Being a safety consultant and a safety auditor is challenging. It’s a little like putting together a puzzle without having the picture to guide you. It can be difficult to draw information out of people, and to pull the necessary pieces of data I need when I’m reviewing potentially hundreds of documents.
What does a typical day look like for you?
As a safety consultant, a typical day for me depends on who I’m working for. We have a client base of over 150 clients, from petroleum to manufacturing, construction to ski hills to ranches. Some of my clients have less than ten employees, while others have over 4,000 with facilities across Western Canada. Much of my time is spent conducting safety management system audits, reviewing documents, interviewing workers and conducting observations at worksites. My days are spent at gas plants in Saskatchewan, manufacturing facilities in Alberta, remote drilling camps in Northern BC, talking to heavy duty mechanics on Vancouver Island, conducting observations in Winnipeg, visiting a ski hill in the Alberta Rockies, or a polo horse ranch in Montana. I never get bored!
Why did you choose this field?
I’m a little different from the majority of safety professionals in that I chose this field because of my father. He’s also a CRSP and has been a successful safety professional for over thirty years. Growing up, he was so passionate about this profession that it appealed to me. I’m lucky that I enjoy it just as much as he does.
What is the most gratifying part of being a safety professional?
The most gratifying part of being a safety professional is the networking I get to do with like-minded safety professionals from across the country. I’m learning from them and growing as an individual because of it. Hopefully it’s making me a better safety professional.
Is there anything you’d like people to know about the field?
A lot of people see safety as a separate field. Safety should be integrated into the operations management system and people need to know that safety is everyone’s responsibility. My dream is to be out of a job one day.
Best part of your day?
The best part of my day is when I’m interviewing workers and see the click happen when they realize how limitless safety can be.
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