IOSH 2017 conference preview - part 2

We interview two speakers from the institution’s November gathering. 





Melaney Doyle, director, MPower People Development

What will you be speaking about at IOSH 2017?

This is my first time attending an IOSH conference and I’m delighted to be talking about emotional intelligence and soft skills. In particular I will be referring to how you can use soft skills and interpersonal relationships to increase influence within the profession.

What advice would you give to safety and health professionals starting out?

My passion is organisational psychology and understanding workplace behaviour. I believe that leaders create culture through their behaviour. By understanding their behaviour and developing emotional intelligence, leaders can forge better working relationships.

Why should people attend IOSH 2017?

This is an international conference and the range of speakers and information on all sorts of aspects of safety and health will be phenomenal this year. I would invite employers to come along. I am not an OSH professional but I am an Melaney Doyle, director, MPower People Developmentorganisational behaviour specialist. I work across sectors with different employers and it’s important that you get your safety and health strategy right. If you attend IOSH this year you will take back with you a huge amount of information that you can disseminate positively in your organisations.

What are the main challenges facing practitioners?

Improving behavioural safety and stress management.

Practitioners must develop soft skills to improve their relationships and to engage managers and employees. 

On stress, employers should analyse the pressure points in their organisation to see what is and isn’t working. Often this means analysing sickness and accident statistics, and sorting out understaffing by revisiting the recruitment and resourcing strategy.

The theme is “transforming health and safety across the world”. How can that be achieved?

I’ve worked quite widely abroad, through Europe and Africa and other areas. During this time, I’ve experienced different safety and health standards. In some areas they fall a long way short of those that we would encourage in Europe. By working together and learning from each other we can help to transform safety and health. IOSH has much to teach and show the world.

John Huckstepp, director, A Blank Canvas

Why did you get involved with IOSH 2017 and what will you be speaking about?

With globalisation and Brexit all over the headlines, international safety is so important. There’s just never been a better time for IOSH to be covering the topic.

I’m going to be talking about international culture. So often, culture is blamed when things go wrong. But culture doesn’t just create what we’ve got now, it can also provide the motivation for change.

My presentation will look at research and experiences from around the world and how local culture can contribute to improved safety performance.

John Huckstepp, director, A Blank CanvasHow does it feel to you, as an IOSH member, to be speaking at the conference?

I’m looking forward to sharing with delegates some of my findings on international culture and how organisations can use culture to improve safety performance.

Why should people attend IOSH 2017?

The conference will tackle some of the major issues. Safety doesn’t sit in a cocoon. Changes in the world have an impact and it’s vital that these changes are understood so we can continue to protect people in workplaces.

What are the main challenges facing practitioners?

A hundred years ago, workplace fatalities were not national news. Now, non-fatal injuries are hitting the headlines; society’s expectations have changed. There is a real expectation that people will return from work not just as well as they started but better.

What advice would you give to safety and health professionals starting out?

With the growth in social media and changes in society’s expectations, almost every day we see the media cover more bad news stories. The role of the safety practitioner is going to be focused around brand reputation and protecting the organisation.


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