Non OHS Technical Skills For The OHS Person

Non OHS Technical Skills For The OHS Person

by George Robotham

The new EBook is available HERE now – go get it!

I put my 216 page e book Guidance For The Beginning OHS Professional on this blog about 2 months ago. Since then I have been kept quite busy responding to requests for copies from people all over the world. Most requests have been from OHS personnel but some have been from managers who on the face of it did not appear to have much in the way of safety responsibilities. One request was from the Captain of an oil tanker operating out of Denmark, I thought that was a bit unusual. One was from the manager of a small nursery in country N.S.W. who said she was absolutely overwhelmed by OHS requirements. .A number of requests were from major international companies. I have discovered the blog has quite an Australian and international reach.

I have lost count of how many copies I have sent out, I am thinking it is about 800. I have not received much feedback but what I have received has been positive. People just starting out in OHS, in particular, appeared to get something out of it and some commented it was more practically useful than some of their study.

New eBook

One of the things that came to me a number of years ago was that the OHS person needs a number of non OHS skills as well as OHS technical skills to be effective. I have decided to try to write a new eBook talking about non OHS technical skills for OHS people.

I have drafted about 30 pages which mention the following.

Non OHS technical skills

Non OHS technical skills I maintain are necessary include-

  1. Communications skills
  2. Interpersonal skills
  3. Management of organisational change
  4. Leadership
  5. Psychology and sociology
  6. Project management
  7. Quality management
  8. Teambuilding
  9. Facilitating meetings / Problem solving groups
  10. Time management
  11. Mentoring / Coaching
  12. Strategy
  13. Managing committees
  14. Recognising displacement activities
  15. Marketing
  16. Human resource management
  17. Ethical high performance standards
  18. Motivation
  19. Being a champion
  20. Counselling
  21. Commitment to excellence
  22. Empathy
  23. Being a chameleon
  24. Relevant industry experience
  25. Learning

All the above reflects my nearly 4 decades of experience in OHS.

I have decided it would be pretty arrogant of me to think I have got this content right. I have had pretty solid OHS experience but not all that much managerial experience. I have worked with some lousy managers however and have a few clues on what not to do.

I am asking for your input to improve this e book. Maybe you have points you would like to see mentioned in the above categories, maybe you have new categories you would like to see discussed. I make no guarantees I will incorporate all comments but they will certainly receive consideration.

My aim is to make this publication really useful to OHS personnel, I am certain your input will improve it.

You cab email George with your comments:

George Robotham

George Robotham

George was a Legend in the Safety World who passed away in Sept 2013 but left us with a great legacy
George Robotham
I have worked in OHS for most of my working life, many years in the mining industry including over 10 years in a corporate OHS role with BHP. Since leaving the mining industry I have worked in a variety of safety roles with a variety of employers, large & small, in a variety of industries. I was associated with my first workplace fatality at age 21, the girl involved was young, intelligent, vivacious and friendly. Such a waste! I was the first on the scene and tried to comfort her and tend to her injuries. She said to me “George, please do not let me die” We put her on the aerial ambulance to Rockhampton base hospital where she died the next day. I do not mind telling you that knocked me around for awhile. Since then I have helped my employers cope with the aftermath of 12 fatalities and 2 other life-altering events. The section "Why do Occupational Health & Safety" provides further detail but in summary, poor safety is simply very expensive and also has a massive humanitarian cost. My qualifications include a certificate I.V. in Workplace Training and Assessment, a Diploma in Frontline Management, a Diploma in Training & Assessment Systems, a Bachelor of Education (Adult & Workplace Education) , a Grad. Cert. in Management of Organisational Change and a Graduate Diploma in Occupational Hazard Management. I am currently studying towards a Masters in Business Leadership. Up until recently I had been a Chartered Fellow of the Safety Institute of Australia for 10 years and a member for about 30 years. My interest is in non-traditional methods of driving organisational change in OHS and I have what I believe is a healthy dis-respect for many common approaches to OHS Management and OHS Training. I hold what I believe is a well-founded perception that many of the things safety people and management do in safety are “displacement activities” (Displacement activities are things we do, things we put a lot of energy into, but which when we examine them closely there is no valid reason for doing them). My managerial and leadership roles in OHS have exposed me to a range of management techniques that are relevant to Business Improvement. In particular I am a strong supporter of continuous improvement and quality management approaches to business. I believe leadership is the often forgotten key to excellence in most aspects of life. I hold the Australian Defence Medal and am a J.P.(Qualified). I have many fond memories of my time playing Rugby Union when I was a young bloke.

Do you have any thoughts? Please share them below