In my younger years I was not really concerned about my education, I was preoccupied with more important stuff, trust me, in more ways than one. Life was pretty simple, I played every sport imaginable in high school so I could get out of class, never studied for a test or exam, spent 5 years in high school so I could play more football and when asked what my chosen career was going to be by the guidance councillor it was a quick answer, I would play professional hockey. No if ands or buts, that is what would happen.
I remember the councillor asking me what my back up plan would be and said I would probably get into trucking and I will never forget the look of disgust on her face and her response to that was “I’m sure you can do better than that”. I am sure there are many high school councillors today who still have the same opinion. For those who did feel that way it is unfortunate that they have not been brought up to speed on what terrific opportunities are in transportation.
Well, I never made it to the NHL or played professional hockey, go figure but I did find my way into the transportation industry. The industry and the people in it have been extremely good to me and my entire family. I will say it has been a lot of work, some great times, some tough times but overall it’s been an amazing ride and it has come with tons of effort, some luck and most importantly remedial education.
Once I decided what I was going to do with my life I worked very hard at getting educated and certified. The good old Ontario Safety League in downtown Toronto, a very intimating place for a country boy from Caledonia but I spent many days there under the guidance and expertise of Jim Whetstone. Jim was an amazing guy, a great educator and I couldn’t wait to learn more, Fleet Safety, Defensive Driving, Techniques of Instruction, Accident Investigation, In Class, In Car Instructor and many, many certificates followed. These certificates paid off big time for me. In the early days (the late 80’s) when I was a one man show and strong support from my bride Lisa, I would strut into meetings bubbling with confidence and let potential clients know why they should hire me and always had copies of my certificates in hand to show them I was certified. I had education in my field and I had the certificates to back it up.
Today there are many courses and certificates a Professional Safety Person (PSP) can obtain and there are many safety consultants out there who claim to be experts and solve your issues and problems. Two words for anyone looking for such a person or company, BE CAREFUL! Just because your looking at a fancy website with lots of claims as to the validity of the person and company of their expertise doesn’t mean they have what you need. Testimonials are easily written by friends and you really need to do your due diligence before hiring someone.
Yes, you get what you pay for but if you don’t do your reference checks on the company or person you may get surprised at the results of the service. These people can make you look pretty bad pretty fast. My best advice to you is during the hiring process ask the “safety consultant” or the company for his or her resume. Check up on their history, who they worked for, do they have a good track record? If they were a sub par employee with lots of warts and jumped around as an employee why hire them? What about asking them why their on their own now, doing there own thing. What about their customers, who are they, what did they do for them? Do your due diligence, call the customers they have claimed to work for and ask about there services. ask about there offices, do they work out of their basement or from local shop. Find out if they have backup if they are a one person show. If they get sick or hurt where does that leave you and your company?
Trust me, there are plenty of bandits out there waiting to take advantage of you, your company and your wallet.
With almost 30 years of owning our business in the safety and education arena and working with hundreds of companies and certifying thousands of people we have assembled an amazing team at KRTS and Transrep. Humbly, I would say some of the best in the business are part of our team, I say that not in a conseated way but a proud way. There are many good people and companies who do what we do, I will tell you there are many shady ones as well, BE CAREFUL, and do your homework.
Speaking of certification I am really excited to announce that Transrep Inc. will be hosting a National Recruitment, Retention and Human Resource Symposium in Mississauga on April 27 at the Centre for Health and Safety Innovation (CHSI).
This day will be specific to those in or wanting to get into recruiting, retention and human resource. Learn from the best of the best in our industry listening to individuals and panels on everything from hiring to firing, best practices, the newest software and technology to make you better at what you do. For those attend the entire day a Certificate of Completion will be issued. Mark the date and stay tuned for more information.