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Executives Advise SH&E Professionals

During the Safety 2011 Executive Summit, a panel of high-ranking corporate executives shared their insights on how SH&E professionals can be more effective and have greater influence. When asked what advice they could give attendees to take back to their workplaces, each executive provided some sage counsel.

“Read The Logic of Failure,” advised Anne Pramaggione, president and COO of Commonwealth Edison. “It explains how people think and make decisions. She also said, “At the end of the day, it’s about people. The role of leader is personal, not isolated. Engage with the people being asked to take safe actions.”

Jim Cristman, vice president and general manager of CITGO Lemont Refinery, shared this strong advice: “No regrets. Don’t wait to say it, don’t wait to do it,” he said about working to advance safety.

Charlie Bacon, chair and CEO of Limbach Facility Services, stressed caring as the key change agent in companies. “When people care about a company because they know the company cares about them,” the investment in safety can have a “ginormous return on investment,” he said.

Boeing’s Atsuo Miyake encouraged SH&E professionals to be problem solvers and to be persistent. Quoting Winston Churchill, Mikayke said, “Success is to go from one failure to the next with no loss of enthusiasm.” Miyake is corporate director of EHS, commercial airlines.

Susan Lewis, corporate director of EH&S Operating, Dow Chemical, pointed to her industry responsible care initiative as an important guiding principle and emphasized the safety-first mind-set. “Instead of thou shalts, we need to encourage I wills,” she explained. “We want people to feel strange if they aren’t operating in a safety-first mind-set.”

Thanks to BP for sponsoring the Executive Summit!

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