In many professions or professional activities successes and recognition are reached depending on the milestones that one has achieved. Moreover, if these achievements are exceptional and/or extraordinary, logically, professional growth is enhanced with this direct relationship.
There are other professions or professional activities, in which the opposite always happens, like a negative of an old photo (from the non-digital age), as is the case with Safety and Health Specialists.
In these activities, satisfaction and excellence come when nothing happens, that is, as the saying goes “no news is good news”. The best that can happen is that we have no news, no calls from the companies that we have been assigned to (if working in a SPA) in the companies in which we are carrying out, for example, a safety coordination or acting as a preventive resource on a construction site or in the case of assuming one’s own resources in any company, not having news of any department or production areas.
The problems usually come as milestones (incidents, accidents, occupational sicknesses and any general damage to health) and also, apart from all the consequences that are generated around these circumstances to the main “actors” who are suffering the consequences of damaged health, there are also some side ‘actors’ who are forgotten, suffering other consequences such as psychosocial risks, since they “should” have done something so the above wouldn’t have happened.
Normality for a Health and Safety Specialist implicated in his work, results in situations of ongoing “stress”, for wanting to control all the variables (of course) that may affect the realization of any damage to health, even controlling situations and activities in which he/she does not have the ability to even influence, since the decisions are taken by other people, who in a moment can make production prevail against health and safety, regardless of some of the preventive principles suitable for such situations.
Situations that often (mostly) depends not on what the Health and Safety Specialists do, but what the companies involved and/or the main “actors” “not do” or “stop doing” in relation to what common sense and safety culture in the form of “best practices manual” tells us for these specific cases.
Yes, here, job satisfaction and business efficiency is that nothing happens, which can become a normality day to day for all companies (this is why a Health and Safety Specialist must fight and struggle) and that this will result in recognition for having achieved that nothing happens, it is not taken into account, that it is assumed normal and that anyone can achieve this.
Even personally, I have heard some things regarding Safety and Health Specialists like: “he doesn’t do anything” or “I don’t know what he does” or even “I don’t want to even see him because every time he comes he makes me stop production…”
This is what it is, if someone claimed that this profession that so many of us have signed up for, that we like and we still like, had given him some recognition in the form of an award or medal, personally I think you made a mistake… it’s not the right place.
However, if what you want is to have the “sword of Damocles” hanging over your head, if so…, congratulations! You’ve nailed it.
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