Kate Gardner - my health and safety journey
“What to you want to do when you leave school?”
Become a nurse, was always my reply.
“Oh, you’ll be good at that” was the automatic response from everyone, so why do I find myself writing this after spending most of my working career in health, safety and facilities management?
Life, as I’ve found out, doesn’t aways follow the plan that we set out with. When I moved from the NHS into retail and subsequently into the manufacturing sector, I got to see that safety was not often considered as important. Indeed, I remember many of the engineering and production guys talking about accidents and the subsequent injuries being “an occupational hazard”.
For over 15 years I worked in the pharmaceutical sector where my roles encompassed developing risk assessments, fleet management and driver training programmes, contractor management and construction project planning, new starter inductions and in-house training.
In 2006 I joined Workplace Law (as it was then) as an FM and health and safety consultant and this is where I have been able to further develop and refine my health and safety and facilities management practice. During these last 18 years I have worked with many different clients, supporting them with their health and safety management. I’ve created and delivered a wide range of client-specific training programmes, delivered IOSH and NEBOSH training, carried out audits, created hundreds of fire risk assessments and supported many of our clients with a wide range of safety and FM projects in heritage buildings, the further education sector, financial services, the charity sector, museums, rural industries and logistics. During COVID-19 I worked with many of our clients to ensure that we could continue to deliver good quality training experiences via our virtual training classrooms.
When I started out in health and safety I was very much viewed as the enforcer, but modern safety has evolved and I now view myself as an influencer. So how can I help you?