February 2, 2023

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“Being able to train and instruct others brings together a very specific skill set that cannot be underestimated” – Mark Cardnell champions the HS trainer

Mark Cardnell says basic health and safety training can ignite and refresh a career.

Before the start of a recent health and safety meeting, the conversation fell on how or why attendees had chosen health and safety as their careers. It was interesting that several similarities were identified.

I was particularly taken by one aspect that came up; that a basic health and safety awareness instruction had sparked enthusiasm to learn more about the subject. For me, this was without question the reason I decided to take the career path I did.

Major influence

The discussion soon took me back down memory lane and to my first training session. I could still recall the subject and name of the trainer (who would actually become the first major influence on my career), and it made me realise that being able to train and instruct others brings together a very specific skill set that cannot be underestimated.

Credit: Scott Graham/Unsplash

The role of the trainer or instructor is not just about subject matter but about cultivating interest and confidence. Confidence at the early stages of anyone’s career has a profound effect for many years by curating feelings of valued and respect and therefore being able to interact in a team and taking personal responsibility as an individual. The influence training implements has lifelong impacts which may not be noticed immediately, but it will come to the forefront time and time again throughout our careers.

The trainer is often seen as a subject matter expert but they are also a person that is consistently professional, approachable and an effective communicator among other skills. Effective training that has relevance has so many benefits, not only to the individual but to the whole organisation and across the wider community.


I know from my own personal experiences that health and safety has evolved dramatically over the past few years and has accelerated further following the return to the workplace post-pandemic.  It is now taking a whole new and exciting direction, therefore, the importance of learning new or refreshing skills at any point in our careers is both a personal and organisational responsibility. By keeping informed and up-to-date displays ownership, leadership, and respect at all levels and the training of personnel could not be of more importance than at the present time – to positively influence health and safety in everything we do during our careers is surely what we all want to achieve.

Organisations and individuals can now access a wealth of training resources from one to ones and training service providers to e-learning and video, but let’s not forget the value of in-house toolbox talks and classroom training and perhaps we’ll inspire the next generation of professionals.

Mark Cardnell was voted one of SHP’s Most Influential for 2022. Click here to read the full list of others that made the shortlist.

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