Successful EHS professionals are ensuring the future of their company, not just preventing injuries and illnesses, said Steve Owens, president of Maxim Performance Systems, Inc., at the ASSE risk management symposium this week. He works with a contractor on the Space Shuttle Program at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

"You need to have all of your employees emotionally connected to the product, the goal," Owens said. "For instance, every employee in the space program wants those astronauts to come home safely to their families. That's an emotional connection. Look at the employees at Disney world. It's not just a job; they are providing a memorable experience for attendees and the many children and adults that go to their entertainment parks. It's not just a job.

"Today, more than ever as safety professionals we have not only the opportunity but also the tools to be key drivers in the improvement of results for the whole of the businesses we serve, not just for the safety processes we lead. Because the businesses that employ our services face a multitude of risks in today's global marketplace, our work within these organization must begin to bring greater value than in past years," Owens said.

"Our focus on compliance must begin to shift to quantifying and mitigating risk, much the same way as done in other elements of the business. Our work must connect directly to results for the whole business."