Women in Safety Summit a chance to be 'seen as an industry leader'

Why Sukhi Dhillon says conferences can help you achieve your career goals

Women in Safety Summit a chance to be 'seen as an industry leader'

As the Women in Safety Summit approaches in Calgary, Sukhi Dhillon, the senior director of environmental health and safety and quality at Carmichael Engineering, is gearing up to participate in a panel focusing on career development. With her vast experience in the field, Dillon aims to impart valuable insights to fellow safety professionals, especially those seeking to advance their careers.

Dhillon’s motivation for participating in the panel is two-fold. She wants to help others, but she also wants to use it as a chance to put herself in front of an audience. “When an opportunity arises, never say it's not part of my job. Try to expand your responsibility, your circle of influence," she advises. Dhillon believes in the power of proactive problem-solving, asserting that being perceived as a problem solver is invaluable in any organization.

For those eyeing career advancement, Dhillon stresses the need to manage perception effectively. "Climbing the ladder is never equal to results; it's not a linear formula," she says.

Building relationships, networking, and actively participating in company functions are vital strategies for managing one's reputation and visibility within the organization. That’s part of the reason she thinks engaging in a panel discussion can help her realize her own ambitions.

"I want to be a vice president,” reveals Dhillon. “But in order for me to get there, I need to get out, not just internally, but externally be part of the conferences, speak at the conferences, so that I can be seen as an industry leader, and I don't need to apply for that vice president job that I'm seeking,” explains Dhillon, who says it’s not about convincing senior members of her team to promote her, but more about being the clear best option when the role opens up. “They’ll see that, oh, this is the person we want."

While Dhillon intends to leverage the opportunity to enhance her personal brand and network within the industry, with the goal of positioning herself for higher roles without having to apply for them, she’s also eager to share advice with rising stars.

For those just starting out in a safety career, Dhillon advises setting short-term goals with a growth mindset. "Always work on improving yourself," she advises, highlighting the significance of self-awareness and continuous learning.

Reflecting on her own journey to a senior position, Dhillon attributes her success to relentless dedication and exceeding expectations. "I never boxed myself in. I always gave 200% to any task assigned to me," she says.

With her dedication, strategic mindset, and unwavering commitment to growth, Dhillon exemplifies the spirit of empowerment and advancement in the safety profession.

The Women in Safety Summit promises to be an invaluable platform for professionals like Dhillon to share knowledge, network, and chart their paths to success in the dynamic field of safety management.