BC Safety Charter Roundtable A Big Success

Submitted. The 2014 BC Safety Charter Annual Roundtable was a big success with delegates and Charter members. The annual event was held May 1, at the Delta Burnaby Hotel and Conference Centre and, according to many who attended, it was the most inspirational roundtable to date.

Charter ambassador Trevor Linden, the newly appointed president of hockey operations for the Vancouver Canucks, was on hand early in the morning to greet delegates and sign autographs.


FIOSA-MIOSA CEO Lisa McGuire and Charter Steering Committee Chair Ben Hume addressed delegates on the enormous strides the organization has taken in the last year, not only in terms of increased membership but in terms of opportunities for networking, mentoring and sharing knowledge and information.

Steering Committee Chair Ben Hume

Hume outlined the importance of the new KPI Index which allows companies to determine their current situation, vis-a-vis health and safety, and provide options for improvements. Hume said it was an important step in providing measurable value for members.Jeremy Slater, of Acklands-Grainger, spoke about the importance of safe and health workplaces and Acklands-Grainger’s longstanding commitment, not only being a healthy and safe employer but helping others on their journey. Slater introduced BC Hydro’s Executive VP of Generation, Chris O’Reilly, who addressed delegates on Hydro’s commitment to health and safety and its ongoing journey towards excellence.

O’Reilly was quite candid with delegates admitting BC Hydro has faced major challenges but shared some of the lessons the utility has learned as it repositions itself to be an example for others.

Jeremy Slater, Acklands-Grainger

After a morning fitness break, courtesy of Club 16 Trevor Linden Fitness, Rachel O’Connor, from the Hay Group, spoke of the need for CEOs to develop strategies which will allow them to achieve the culture change required to truly become leaders in health and safety. O’Connor then introduced retired International Space Station Commander Chris Hadfield, the event’s keynote speaker.Hadfield provided an inspirational and moving address and shared his lifelong commitment to effective risk management and how it impacts on health and safety.

Chris O’Reilly, BC Hydro

Hadfield recounted some of the harrowing experiences he faced as commander of the international space station and described his philosophy that risk the benefits of action must outweigh the hazard.”To me, the only good reason to take a risk is that there’s a decent possibility of a reward that outweighs the hazard,” he said.

Delegates asked many questions of the astronaut and a number of interesting discussions ensued including just how to keep your cool in a crisis.

“Competence means keeping your head in a crisis, sticking with a task even when it seems hopeless, and improvising good solutions to tough problems when every second counts. It encompasses ingenuity, determination and being prepared for anything,” he said.

“Astronauts have these qualities not because we’re smarter than everyone else (though let’s face it, you do need a certain amount of intellectual horsepower to be able to fix a toilet). It’s because we are taught to view the world—and ourselves—differently. My shorthand for it is “thinking like an astronaut.” But you don’t have to go to space to learn to do that.”

Chris Hadfield and Lisa McGuire

Ian Munroe of WorkSafeBC was on hand to introduce Maureen Shaw who addressed delegates on the importance of one the emerging issues in health and safety – mental well-being.

Shaw, who is currently national/international advisor for the BC Safety Charter and FIOSA-MIOSA, was president and CEO of the Industrial Accident Prevention Association (IAPA) and is a member of the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s Advisory Committee on Psychological Health and Safety.

One of the most popular parts of the roundtable each year is the CEO Panel during which several CEOs and senior executives join in a free-flowing discussion about health and safety and some the challenges and successes they have faced on their journey.

Led by MC Kathryn Gretsinger, from CBC Radio and the UBC Journalism School, the business leaders discussed a wide variety of topics facing leaders in today’s business world.

MC Katheryn Gretsinger

David McAnerny, President and CEO of SunRype, Frank Saunders, VP of Nuclear Oversight and Regulatory Affairs with Bruce Power, and Marius Jacobs, VP of RISKmap North America, spoke of the need for management and employees to be on the same page regarding health and safety. For that to happen, the panelists agreed that agreement on individual assessment of risk was needed and for that to occur, there has to be an open and honest exchange of accurate ionformation.

CEO Panel: Frank Saunders, Marius Jacobs, Dave McAnerny

The panelists devoted some time to a discussion of ways in which information is and ought to be shared. The practice of circulating surveys was discussed with several important questions being raised such as:

  • Who really answers company surveys honestly?
  • Why get employees to fill them out at work?
  • Can surveys, in any real way, replace direct human contact and interaction?

McAnerney said is important to know company programs inside out and then ensuring that you find out what your people really know about them. Perhaps more importantly; find out what they don’t know.

“I’ve often said that leadership is getting action out of others. The best way to get the right action is to get the right people,” he said.

Natella Isazada

FIOSA-MIOSA’s board chair Daneen Skilling closed the roundtable after a signed Trevor Linden Canucks jersey was awarded to Natella Isazada from RAS Industries.

Daneen Skilling and Chris Hadfield

Leave a Reply