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Paula Monteiro: Changing people’s attitude to safety culture

Published: September 13, 2021

Paula has always been drawn to ensuring her teams were happy, so moving into health and safety was a natural next step.

With a strong background in industry and an initial role in production, quality, environment and new developments, Paula was drawn to health and safety. Here she explains why the move from products to people was a natural progression, why safety behaviour is a major challenge and how conversation is the key.

Q: What inspired you to move to a health and safety role, and what do you see as your key challenges?

Paula: When working on the plant and production side, I was always drawn to ensuring my teams were happy and motivated. So when the opportunity to move across to health and safety came up, it felt a natural progression. Knowing that I now care for people and safety on a full-time basis makes me really happy. I’ve now been in the role for over ten years. During that time you get to see first-hand the complexities of the job.

From the outside, it looks like keeping people safe is not that difficult, but it’s never that easy. It’s not simply about removing hazards, it’s about behaviours. One of the role’s biggest challenges is changing people’s attitudes to safety culture.

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