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My journey to zero and why I decided that’s the only way to go

Gökhan Yıldız
Gökhan Yıldız
-Apr 08, 2022

I became familiar with the concept of workplace safety 16 years ago while I was doing my master’s thesis. The topic that I was researching on was a challenge that the whole industry was grappling with: How to develop a set of reliable EHS management performance metrics? One of the key insights that I gained in that research was that the lagging indicators are not indicative of future EHS performance. In other words, how many people have been hurt in the past year is not a true reflection of how well safety performance is being managed in that facility.

After a few years, the BP Horizon incident took place which led to several fatalities and an environmental disaster. Guess what? This incident took place only after a few days that the VP and senior leaders had visited the rig to celebrate Loss Time Incident (LTI) free days. Another great lagging indicator!

Over the years, I have had the opportunity to work across more than 6 countries leading Health, Safety, and Environment teams to deliver megaprojects and run facilities in high-risk industries like oil & gas and construction. We have burnt multi-million manhours every year on my watch, dealing with what we call red-banded contractors with poor safety competencies. We used several tools, techniques, initiatives, training, and campaigns to build organizational capacity in these companies to manage and improve their EHS performance. Did all these work to save lives and prevent injuries? One of the most difficult questions to answer in our profession is how can you demonstrate the life that you just saved? I will never get to know the answer precisely; however, I believe that we saved many lives through building organizational capacity and empowering people at the frontline.

In the absence of a universally measurable and meaningful metric to give us a true reflection of how well the EHS is being managed, we continue to measure what we can; knowing that this is not what really counts!

Then, COVID hit. When the entire world was stuck at home, technology came to save us, enabling most of us to continue working from home. Surely, technology must have a place when it comes to workplace safety. In this era of advanced technology, we are still measuring lagging indicators, still providing training in the way how it was delivered for the past 20 years, patronizing staff with by endless amount of paperwork which is seen as a ‘tick box’ by many, anyways! Moreover, we have been observing a worryingly widening gap between how the work is imagined (designed in the offices) and how it is being done (in the field) due to increasing uncertainty and volatility in the workplace. The following question bugged me even more: How can we bring the technology to the people at the frontline to empower them so that they can comply better and save each other’s lives?

I found the answer in intenseye and I am very glad to announce that I became part of this great team as of April 2022.

Why intenseye?

In my view, intenseye is not just a startup, it represents a bold movement, what I would describe as a transformation of workplace safety from Web 0.3 to Web 3.0. It strives to do that by sticking to the basic principles of human performance: Putting our people at the center. The leadership is driven to serve for such a noble purpose of ‘saving lives. intenseye helps companies on their ‘Journey to Zero’ by providing real-time insights from the field through existing CCTV cameras, closing the gap between the field and the offices and enabling staff at every level to get a better understanding of the work context so that every one of them can take the right action to empower staff doing the work and make compliance easier for them.

The company’s dedication and zero-tolerance policy to data privacy are perfectly matching with my values. I was impressed to learn that intenseye had declined to onboard customers due to their strict commitment to the GDPR regulations.

Lastly, a great dedicated team, every member of which, fully understands and acknowledges the holiness of the purpose that we are after. With the capacity and capability that intenseye has, I have no doubt that we will continue to work with our customers and partners to co-create the future of workplace safety and we will save even more lives!

Call for Action: If you’re reading this blog so far, you are also driven by a similar goal of saving more lives. Please take your time to visit our website and contact us. We can only make the ‘Journey to Zero’ through bringing technology to its knees to serve our people at the frontline and we believe this can only be possible through working together!

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