Set up your network NOW!

The safety people you meet in classes that you take can be a great source of knowledge now and in the future. By setting up your network of friends and colleagues now, you streamline the process of establishing a support base latter.
What good is a support base you may ask? A support with people who have a common core knowledge is essential in the Occupational Safety field. Many times, I will get a call from a former student asking a question concerning one regulation or another. I even get calls from government inspectors from time to time. What I am trying to say is that we all have questions sometimes and it is nice when you have a trusted cohort that you can call on.
Currently I am setting up the network for and I can tell you that it is a daunting task. If it were not for great sites like Linked In and others, it would take years of categorizing contacts into a usable list. You will hear old-timers say, “if I had known then, what I know now, I would have done things differently”. What I am telling you now is DON’T WAIT!
Start by writing down a list of knowledgeable people now that you can turn to if you have a question! First on your list should be any good instructors you may have come across in your training. Next, should be the obvious go-getters in the classes you took. Finally, people who you admire for their knowledge or decision making abilities and last but not least….. your friends. A little work now will save you a lot of legwork in the years to come.
Michael O’Berry is the Director for the National Center for EHS Education (NCESHE) and a safety professional / instructor for over 35 years.

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