A wise man once said: “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
Or did he?
We often attribute this quote to Mahatma Gandhi but over the last 70 years social commentators have argued he may not have actually said it. Regardless, it’s pretty certain the renowned civil rights leader would have approved of the sentiment.
This year, a variation of that quote has become increasingly familiar in the UK oil and gas sector following the appointment of seasoned industry professional Steve Rae to the position of executive director of Step Change in Safety – the not-for-profit safety organisation for the UKCS.
Since taking up the role in July, Steve has been delivering his powerful and motivational presentations, setting out his vision for the safety of the industry which he has served for more than 35 years.
“If you want to see the change, be the change” is his mantra and the industry has been sitting up and listening.
In the five months since taking over the reins at Step Change in Safety, Steve has overseen one of the busiest ever periods for the organisation and its members.
In September, the organisation’s workforce engagement group held one of the biggest ever gatherings of Elected Safety Reps in the world. More than 350 onshore and offshore safety representatives gathered at P&J Live in Aberdeen for the Safety Rep 30 event to mark 30 years of the SI971 offshore regulations and witness the launch of Safety Rep Essentials – new guidance tools supported by the Health and Safety Executive.
Around 70 installations and sites around the world also joined in the proceedings during a global webinar.
The success of the safety rep conference was closely followed by good news and national recognition for the collaborative work carried out by Step Change in Safety’s Major Accident Hazard Understanding (MAH) work-group. The group was triumphant in the UK-wide Energy Institute Awards, winning the health and safety category for the MAH series of films and engagement packs which were developed to improve the understanding of major accident hazards, risk analyses, bowties, barrier maintenance, assurance and verification.
As the year draws to a close, it also heralds the much-anticipated arrival of the online observation card (E-Obs) tool, which has been developed by the Safe Working Essentials work-group.
First introduced in 2016, the Safe Working Essentials suite of tools standardised and simplified common elements of the control of work system, such as toolbox talks, dynamic risk assessments and safety observation cards.
E-Obs is the next step in the evolution of these tools and, if used effectively between operators, employers and across the whole industry, it will allow the quick identification of industry trends and will help target resources where they are needed most.
Increasing engagement and collaboration across all stakeholders will be a key priority for Step Change in Safety next year. It already promises to be a year of high productivity across the work-groups as they continue to develop and share best practice.
At Step Change in Safety we believe that “if you want to see change” then you must start by “being part of that change”.
Join us and play your part.