As I start my 30th year as a Safety Leader, I reflect upon how serving others in safety through the development of standards, processes, tools, systems, and influence has changed and evolved over the years.
Early on I spent most of my energy using manual tools (i.e. books, maps, standard operation procedures, emergency response equipment, and other non digital processes) to serve the public in emergency response and rescue. I did not write my first e-mail until 1995 when I was lucky enough to be hired as a safety engineer.
During my early time serving as a safety leader, the evolution of cell phones, emergency response monitoring equipment (i.e. hazardous toxic and flammable gas interconnected monitors) and the application of other technology advances were becoming the norm. The way I have served work family members directly and indirectly has evolved since the early 2000’s. Technology advancements in the safety leadership space has allowed me to serve work family members across the globe.
"COVID-19 pushed the application of paperless, digital, virtual meetings, and trusting safety leadership service to new heights"
COVID-19 pushed the application of paperless, digital, virtual meetings, and trusting safety leadership service to new heights because of a need to connect with work family members without being physically present. The application of and the use of virtual meeting platforms is one significant technical advancement that was accelerated for use per the recent pandemic. Each one of the below technology and digital advancement examples and others supports safety leadership in 2021:
• Using cell phones and tablets as mini computers–Being able to review procedure, complete analytical research, complete checklist, document activities, hold meetings, record videos, take pictures, and engage in group conversations are all part of a safety leader’s responsibilities.
• Using robots & drones–Applying robots and drones in place of work family members in hazardous or deadly situations (i.e. confined spaces) provides an engineering control to prevent exposure to present hazards https://www.worley.com/what-we-do/our-technology/digital-products/carol.