No two days are the same for Senior Manager Safety Petrina Hilton. Petrina provides corporate and on-the-ground support to staff and contractors. It's all in the name of ensuring health and safety is a daily priority.
Q. What is your role and what does a typical day look like?
My role as Senior Manager of Safety varies. There is a pretty equal balance of corporate and on the ground practical activities. Providing support to all North Queensland Bulk Ports (NQBP) employees and our contractors is necessary to ensure business as usual.
Additionally the focus NQBP is placing on safety leadership and continual improvement requires considered and strategic planning. In collaboration with Executive Leadership Team, I am developing a plan (program of works) spanning the next two to three years that will take NQBP on a journey embracing improved safety performance, safety leadership and safety culture.
Q. This year's theme for International Women’s Day is ‘Each for equal’ – an equal world is an enabled world. What does this mean to you?
Equality simply means all people are equal in relation to opportunities, rights and status. True equality for each and every person can enable amazing outcomes. As a woman in predominately male-related field, I feel privileged to be able to assimilate with other professionals and believe I bring a different perspective to the role and a uniqueness which can benefit and influence improved safety performance.
All great safety leaders are equal.
Q. What is the most challenging part of your job?
Limited time! Each day represents new challenges, deadlines and opportunities to learn from lessons. Paperwork is never fun but necessary. Responding to a safety event where a person has been injured, and witnessing first-hand the impact on the injured worker, their work colleagues, family, friends and at times emergency responders. Thoughts immediately turn to what could have been done to prevent this or what do we need to do better.
Q. How do you find working in a male-dominated industry?
For me it provides opportunities for me to be exposed to some powerful, knowledgeable and experienced mentors. Challenges me and my abilities on a daily basis to do better, apply years of study in practice, and continues to take me on a path of life-long learning. At times I feel short! I believe most gents appreciate input from a different perspective.
Q. What advice do you have for other women pursuing careers in traditionally male-dominated industries?
Don’t be limited by what society perceives to be a ‘man’s job’ or is by nature a male-dominated industry.
If you can wake up each day and love the work you do it is far more rewarding! Each day I love coming to work, embrace the challenges by considering they are an opportunity for a solution, work with amazing people, meet new amazing people and am constantly inspired by the work of others.
Safety has a broad spectrum and honestly I learn something new every day.