In the first part of this article, we discussed how the modern-day SHEQ professional has need for additional skills over and above the more traditional skills required of the traditional health and safety officer of old. Business has changed, and so must the SHEQ professional change too.
The first new important skill we discussed was commercial awareness – the need to understand how the company works, specifically concerning finances. We also looked at why the SHEQ professional needs comprehensive understanding of the operational realities of each department in order to execute his or her responsibilities effectively. Let’s look at some more new skills required of the modern SHEQ professional.
Implementing and maintaining SHEQ compliance is not the most popular of jobs, so it is important that the SHEQ professional has charisma. He or she needs to be able to build rapport and maintain good professional relations with employees to get their buy-in into the SHEQ policies and procedures to which they must comply. The SHEQ professional also needs to maintain healthy and positive relationships with management, to ensure compliance in the different departments but also to ensure that the necessary money is budgeted for comprehensive SHEQ compliance and approved by senior management.
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Communication skills are also an important tool as employees and management are more likely to comply with SHEQ regulations if they understand the need for these rules and regulations. You cannot simply tell an employee what PPE to wear – it will cause resentment and non-compliance. Rather explain why every piece of personal protection equipment is necessary and how it can save a life or limb … by communicating the reason behind the rule, the employee understands and will not only comply to the SHEQ regulations but also encourage his or her colleagues to do the same.
Another valuable tool for the modern SHEQ professional is a comprehensive SHEQ management solution to help implement and maintain SHEQ policies and procedures.