By NZISM Secretary
Welcome back NZISM members and supporters! I hope you all had a much-deserved rest and spent time recuperating from the madness of last year. I had forced rest over the holidays due to fracturing my ankle just before Christmas. We had planned a hectic schedule of travelling around catching up with friends and whanau and camping in Northland. However, we had to change our plans to accommodate my mobility issues and although it was frustrating, what I realised was the holiday planned wouldn’t have given me the rest that my mind and body needed.
My current situation has meant I have had plenty of time to mull over the events of last year, look back in awe at what we managed to achieve, and be grateful for the freedom we have, right now. I want to thank Steve Young for the work he undertook last year on the Pathways to Professional Accreditation report. If you are considering further study in 2021, I strongly encourage you to review this information first. Steve has done all the hard mahi for you, reviewing the various tertiary providers across New Zealand whose health and safety qualifications meet our accreditation requirements. We have made this information publicly available, so feel free to share the link with friends and whanau who may be interested in undertaking further study. We will review this annually, so that each year's course information is up to date and easily accessible, further helping to inform what courses best meet the needs of the profession. Well done Steve for your hard work and well done to our amazing Communications & Marketing Manager, Tanya Bater, who designed the report – we are incredibly proud to put the NZISM logo on this report.
In terms of planning your professional development for the year, we have made this much easier to identify gaps in your knowledge using the NZISM accreditation framework. Everyone now has access to the myCPD portal, helping you keep track of your development. Whether you are accredited or not, this is a fantastic tool. The best place to start is with a self-assessment of your knowledge and skills. We have one assessment for each. You select the accredited level you aspire to, assess yourself against each of the competencies and the report produced will identify gaps you may have in achieving accreditation. You can then create a plan to build your knowledge and skills in the areas identified. It is as easy as that. Your webinar attendance is now automatically recorded as an unassigned activity in myCPD, again making it easier for you to record your engagement with the NZISM CPD programme.
Targeting your learning rather than haphazardly undertaking CPD throughout the year will ensure you are on a pathway to achieving the knowledge and skills the profession has identified as being critical to success as a health and safety practitioner/professional. The implementation of these tools was a major improvement in our offering to members last year. We were determined that the ability to identify, monitor, and report on professional development would be freely available to all our members, giving you another tool for self-improvement and development included in your membership. Congratulations to the Accreditation Committee and Sara Dearsly, our CPD Manager, who brought this great initiative to life for our members.
We have a team of dedicated member volunteers who run our Peer Support Committee. If you want to know more about them and what they can help you with, check out the Peer Support Network webpage. They are a great bunch who want to give back to their profession by supporting and helping you if you need it.
Our mentoring programme is in high demand. If you are an accredited member of NZISM and would like to know more about becoming a mentor, please email Sara on email@example.com. It's not a huge commitment and there are so many rewards for both you and those you mentor. It's an important part of professional practice, and I encourage you all to have a go at passing on your knowledge. Supporting another person to achieve a set of goals is incredibly satisfying. Make this the year of giving back, even if just one lucky member gets the benefit of your experience and your time – it will be worth it.
Thank you to all of you who have supported and engaged with us over the last year. We are looking forward to another year filled with fantastic professional development opportunities. I hope we are all lucky enough to enjoy more chances to network and share lessons and the learning that, as professionals, we gain so much from.