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Companies can mitigate their risks by investing in strong environmental health and safety management (EHS). Reducing risk means creating a systematic approach to managing safety, ensuring compliance with environmental regulations and incorporating sustainability principles – and any other aspects of workplace safety specific to the industry that could affect the health and well-being of their employees.

Safety managers should be able to find and use reliable safety information sources, address and maintain a consistent approach to safety across borders, encourage open communication, and be diligent in keeping current with trends and changes in their industry.

The following five questions can help you determine how prepared your safety manager will be to respond with the most safety-conscious solutions:

1. How will you deal with a growing workload?

Inevitably, much will be expected from safety managers as they respond to upper management, inspire employees, and ensure compliance – all while handling record keeping, procuring safety products, training employees and handling other administrative duties for various safety categories and concerns.

2. How will you create a culture of safety?

With an increasing emphasis on creating and fostering a culture of safety, your manager should strive to inspire employees to change behaviors and make safer choices. Your safety manager should exhibit executive leadership to promote cooperation and employee ownership of program goals.

3. How will you manage safety across borders?

While safety regulations may differ from country to country, safety managers need to be prepared to keep up with regional and local occupational safety regulations. They also need to address language barriers and cultural differences within the organization, all while providing consistent, standardized implementation of safety management systems.

4. How do you select the right safety sources?

Safety managers are expected to be on top of new information and resources from professional groups, government sources, and the Internet. They must consider each source carefully to be sure that they reference the right information from the right (reliable) source at the right time. Not all sources are created equally.

5. How will you create a climate of open communication?

As with any industry, your safety manager must be willing to give and receive constructive feedback, leading by creating an atmosphere of both sharing and listening. Executives and employees should feel comfortable approaching safety managers with difficult information and confident that they will be met with a knowledgeable response.

By knowing what questions to ask your safety manager – and the appropriate responses – you empower them to do what they do best – protect the health, safety, and well-being of your employees. And offering the right tools to your safety manager can put you in a position to support their success. Introduce Global Safety Management to help him/her manage safety data sheets and have compliance confidence.