America’s frontline leaders raise their Safety Shield

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The Wood Americas HSSEA leadership recently hosted more than 90 frontline leaders for an annual Safety Leadership Offsite. During the three-day conference, the participants immersed themselves in the Safety Shield initiative, teambuilding and implementing best practices on their work site. This year’s theme was “Raise Your Shield.”

The safety conference featured guest speaker, Brad Livingston.  A 10-year employee of a natural gas pipeline company, Brad was involved in a safety incident that was deadly and 100% preventable.  As he laid there engulfed in flames, expecting to die, he thought about his three young daughters and learned firsthand that one decision to participate in a shortcut on the job, can change your life or even end it. Brad did live, but, sadly, his coworker did not.  Humbly, he uses his story to help other professionals think hard about their daily decisions and how just one-second decision can change your life and family members’ lives forever.

The key elements of the Safety Shield, which are prepare, engage, and intervene, were the focus and led the presentations at the conference.  Glory Jewitt, HSSEA VP of Downstream & Chemicals, presented a case study on the prepare element and focused on dropped objects. Kerry Sedge, Americas director of Marketing & Communications, discussed the engage element and took the term to the next level by emphasizing our why: why we make safe decisions, why we go to work every day and why we should always choose safety. Bobby Berry, HSSEA VP of Operations Services, focused on the importance of intervention in your daily work.

On the first night, the group performed a teambuilding activity, where they sorted food items and donated 500 backpack buddies to the Houston Food Bank. The group participated in presentations and safety moments from global and ASA HSSEA leaders about many important topics, such as mental health, distracted driving, and the latest HSSEA technology.

A safety awards ceremony was held to celebrate the work ethic and performance of four HSSEA employees.  The team highlighted a recipient from each Americas service line: Ervey Leyva, Capital Projects Process & Energy, Kevin Trahan, Downstream & Chemicals, Becky Spann, Continuous Improvement, Sandra Supelveda, Capital Projects Upstream & Midstream, and Paul Huson, Operations Services.

Sandra Sepulveda, ASA HSSEA manager in Colombia, was honored with a special safety Award from Miles Tucker, HSSEA VP of Capital Projects, Upstream & Midstream.

“I did not expect to be recognized, but for me, it is very gratifying to know that the company is noticing what we do in the Americas.  Although we are a small office, we contribute to the achievement of our organization's objectives.”

She was humbled and energized, “seeing the commitment of all leadership, not just HSSEA, to ensure that safety messages are transmitted to all levels of the organization.”

HSSEA Specialist, Paul Huson, was also a recipient of a safety award from Bobby Berry, HSSEA VP of Operations Services.

“I was very honored to receive an award. After going through the morning and afternoon sessions, I observed how important safety is to the leadership team and how dedicated they are to the safety of everyone at Wood.   It was an incredible experience to receive recognition from them, and observing their character gave tremendous value to the award. The whole experience was empowering.”

He also gained valuable and applicable information, “everything we learned tied into the Safety Shield.  The main message is simple, but it can be used in all work activities.  I learned how the elements of prepare, engage, intervene are core to the safety of everything we do.  Most importantly, I was inspired to bring back what I learned to everyone at the project and help them to understand.”

Americas HSSEA president, Darren Anstee, was proud of the participants, but also humbled by the thought-provoking content presented by his colleagues and guest speaker, Brad Livingston.  “My goal was to bring together frontline leaders that have a real stake in the day to day decisions of the business.  We wanted to equip them with relevant case studies, practical implementation, and presentations from external and internal speakers on how they can raise their shield in every situation.

“As a leadership team, we want to invest in our frontline colleagues or anyone who can influence the outcome of decisions on their work site.  It is very important that everyone feels confident and comfortable with how to communicate and implement the Safety Shield.”

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