Working in safety is an opportunity to build bridges.
Christine’s organisational skills led her from procurement to spearheading safety knowledge management at group level. Here she describes why it’s important to step outside your ivory tower, get on to the dance floor and think outside of the box to add value and inspire connectivity in safety initiatives.
Q: Tell us how your career in safety begun, what inspires you and how your particular skillsets frame your approach?
Christine: I graduated in political sciences and procurement, so safety is not my initial area of expertise. I begun working for Air Liquide Group in procurement and subsequently moved into a role that involved improving working processes to develop collaboration and effectiveness. Thanks to this experience, I then took responsibility of the Quality, Safety and Risk Management department. I was very lucky because I had two senior people in my team who had a lot of practical experience and outstanding dedication to safety. During the time I spent visiting sites around the world together, I was very clear that I needed to learn and that I trusted their expertise.
By combining their technical expertise with my deep knowledge of the organisation we were able to achieve great results. It was definitely during this time on construction sites that I ‘fell in love’ with safety. What inspires me most is the safety values that we have at Air Liquide. For us, it is not acceptable that an employee, contractor or a customer is injured as a result of our activities. My approach is to build connectivity between the different stakeholders and expertise to explore how we can collectively strengthen safety processes. Working closely with others encourages us all to think outside of the box to find different solutions that achieve the same outcome; improving safety.