One of the recurring themes, in all of my "critical job skills" articles is growing your specialized knowledge in certain areas such as government regulations. This year, the EPA updated section 316 b of the Clean Water Act which regulates the construction of cooling water intake structures at power plants and manufacturing facilities.These regulatory changes don't mean much to the average job seeker but for biological science majors it means new science jobs. Under the updated regulations, manufacturers and energy companies who have cooling systems which draw water from a lake or river will have to make sure they have the "best available technology" to reduce the numbers of fish and invertebrates killed during draws.Companies will have to hire teams of biologists to do extensive aquatic wildlife surveys to assess the damage by intake systems to the underwater ecosystems.Once these assessments are done, scientists will have to work with engineers and company environmental representatives to determine the best technology needed to comply with new EPA standards. .
What Does This Mean For Science Jobs?
The costs and benefits of environmental regulations are always hotly debated but some do create some specialized and well paid jobs. In this case, over 1,260 manufacturing and power plant facilities are affected by the rule update and some of these facilities have not had an aquatic assessment done in a number of years. Scientists should start new jobs opening right now and continuously over the next 12 months.
The disaster in the community of West,TX reminded us of what happens when companies do not follow safety standards and government officials fail to enforce them – Lives are lost and adversely impacted.Our prayers and thoughts go out to the victims and their families especially to the first responders who bravely fought the fire until the end.
Why These Job Skills Are Important For Safety Professionals
Over the next decade safety professionals will be in high demand because companies and governments can no longer afford to deal with the aftermath of accidents and disasters, like explosions, that could have been prevented. In response to the rise in these positions, we decided to explore what skills employers want in the safety professionals. Here are some of our findings .
The ability to create and implement safety programs across cultures: One of my clients recently said,“What works in Peoria, IL may not work in Pune, India. I need a safety manager who understands that concept.” In the global workplace, there is no such thing as a “cookie cutter” safety program. Safety professionals have to be sensitive to the cultures, communication styles and languages of the people across their companies because miscommunication can lead to disasters. Companies will be looking for safety professionals who understand how to deliver and manage multicultural programs.
Ability to understand, communicate and implement new government regulations: OSHA, EPA, Homeland Security and state government agencies change safety regulations on a regular basis. It is up to the Safety professionals to understand these rules and implement them in a way that is easily adopted by their company's workflow and culture.
Incident Response Management & Situational Leadership:“When it comes to emergency response, safety managers have to have nerves of steel and the mind of a battlefield commander.” The West Fertilizer plant explosion, Fukushima Daiichi nuclear incident and the BP oil spill have brought incident response management and situational leadership to the forefront in the corporate board room, the media and the general public. Successful safety professionals will need training and experience in these areas to handle complex emergencies and intense media scrutiny.
The ability to communicate the savings of safety programs in financial terms: Safety professionals must be able to communicate the benefits of their safety programs in financial terms such as Return on Investment (ROI), Triple Bottom Line (3BL) and Internal Rate of Return (IRR). Communicating in these terms will help assure corporate managers that investments in safety equipment and programs are not only protecting the lives of their workers but averting the chance of large financial losses due to accident related insurance payouts as well.
A strong understanding of Workplace Psychology: Safety professionals have to understand how and why workers and managers "overlook" or "shortcut" safety procedures in order to make their training more effective and take steps to correct behaviors that could lead to an incident.
A strong understanding of Root Cause Analysis and Accident Investigation: The CSI television series have popularized forensics and accident investigations. Like CSI, safety professionals have to investigate how and why an incident occurred and develop new procedures and protocols to avert future incidents.
A Point to Remember About Becoming A Safety Professional
One important point to remember about being a competent safety professional is remembering that the profession is about protecting people.
Principal Industrial Wastewater Engineer – Charlotte, Houston or Atlanta
Hinton Human Capital, an emerging leader in executive search in Environmental and Infrastructure industries is now searching for Principal Industrial Wastewater Process Engineer for an international environmental consulting firm. Ideal candidate will have at over 15 years of demonstrated experience in the design of industrial wastewater treatments systems plus the following skills and abilities:
A proven track record of project management and technical design accomplishments of industrial wastewater treatment systems for Oil/Gas production facilities, manufacturing ,coal fired utilities or nuclear power facilities
I was on Linked In this morning and read a nice article "5 Reasons Why Recruiters Are Not Calling You" . It was a good article that centered around mistakes many job seekers make on resumes that may be a red flag for recruiters. It also contained some good advice and promoted the Career Coach's resume writing business. Most articles about recruiters portray us as a negative force in the job market hated by employers and job seekers alike. I thank Deborah Walker for not beating that dead subject again. Anyway, back to the main point of this article.
Other Reasons Why Recruiters Don't Call
There are many more reasons why recruiters, like myself, would not call a job seeker. Let me share some of them:
Weak Industry Networking Relationships: One of the downsides of social media is people do not create as many face to face personal relationships anymore. Your network of friends should know you well enough to refer recruiters to you on a regular basis. If your network of friends are not talking about you then it may be harder to get attention from recruiters.
Embellished Resumes: The old adage says "If it is too good to be true, it probably is" . If the language in your resume reads like a advertising piece, recruiters may pass it over. The same is true for poorly written resumes. Make sure your resume is well written and believable before you send it out.
Some Job Seekers Use "Shotgun" Approach to Get Attention: Recruiters understand that job seekers want to find a job as quickly as possible. However, some job seekers believe that applying to every job and broadcasting their resume to every recruiter e-mail address is going to draw attention from recruiters. A word of advice – Be specific to where and to whom you send your resume. You may get a better response.
Build a Relationship With a Recruiter Before You Need A Job: "Its not always what you know but who you know" The last recession flooded the market with job seekers all vying for a few jobs. If you know that your company or industry is in trouble, it is a good idea to build relationships with recruiters before you need a job. Recruiters are in the business of matching the skills of candidates to specific positions. The better they know your background, the better the chance of a phone call.
Recruiters Are People Too
Unfortunately, some job seekers and employers have had bad experiences with recruiters through wrong expectations or unethical practices. We, like everyone else, are imperfect and fallible, Just because a recruiter does not call you or return your overtures.does not mean they are against you. Most recruiters are working positions with very specific requirements set by the employer. If your skills do not match, a phone call may not come. The best strategy to find a job is to network and develop multiple sources of leads.
Environmental Jobs Are A Knowledge and Relationship Driven Market
Have you heard the saying "It's not what you know but who you know." In this "new normal" economy, knowledge and relationships as well as strong skills are the keys to acquiring high level environmental jobs. If you are a environmental engineering or science graduate or experienced environmental professional seeking a new position, here are some important knowledge areas and skills you need to showcase in your resume in 2013 .
Knowledge of Environmental Regulations: New and updated environmental regulations will force companies to find ways to stay in compliance. Environmental professionals will have to translate these changes into solutions that meet compliance and lessen financial liabilities. Environmental regulations are a key driver for the creation of environmental jobs.
Knowledge of Sustainability Principles: It is important to understand that Sustainability has different definitions and levels of acceptance in different industries. If you are seeking corporate environmental jobs, learning these definitions and how to develop profit streams from them will lead stronger opportunities.
Business Development/Sales : Relationships are a key component of environmental jobs. Environmental professionals must have "relationship capital" ( ie. trust and expertise) with qualified clients, regulators and stakeholders to sell their services and bring in profits over the long term
Technical Skills & Knowledge of New Environmental Technologies: Professionals who can execute the basic technical tasks of their profession using the latest environmental technologies will find it somewhat easier to protect their careers because they can pursue opportunities in consulting, corporate and entrepreneurship.
Financial Management & Project Funding: Many new environmental projects will require private investment, alternate funding sources like crowd funding and a higher level of financial accountability. There will many clients who will be dependent on these resources to pay for their projects. Strong environmental consultants will know how to pull these funds together.
Project Management: Environmental professionals will have to be more adept at project management; coaching, motivating and recruiting people as well as interpreting the new domestic and international environmental regulations. All of these areas will have a significant impact on the profitability and delivery of projects.
Knowledge of Cyber Security: Why would an environmental professional need to know about this? Good question. Certain parts of our country's infrastructure are vulnerable to cyber attacks and could be used create massive disasters, if breached. Many new environmental jobs in the information technology space will focus on infrastructure cyber security, disaster prevention and recovery.
Political & Legal Savvy: Environmental and infrastructure projects are often politically charged because of the fight between environmental concerns and the need to create jobs. Environmental professionals will have to navigate these issues without losing sight of their client's objectives. Further, they will have to learn how to engage the public on complex environmental topics.
Environmental Jobs Will Be Hot For Years to Come. Are You Ready?
In a past articles, we have discussed how much the environmental industry has grown and some of the sectors that growing faster than average. I will continue this trend but I want to hear from our readers. Here is what I like to know
What areas of the environmental sectors interest you?