Find out more about HSE People Panel Member Mike Scotland

The HSE People Panel is made up of specialists across different areas who have volunteered to share their insight and experience with the HSE People network

How did you get started in the industry?

I was working for a freight forwarding company as a warehouseman dealing solely with an Offshore Drilling client. During my shift one afternoon I received a call from the receptionist of the Drilling Company informing me that a superintendent of one of the rigs was free for a chat and if I would like to come through and meet him. One conversation lead to a second, and then on the third conversation I was offered a position to join one of the companies drilling jack up rigs as an entry level green hand roustabout.

Do you have a motto or saying that you live by?

There is no “I” in team but there is a “U” in community


Positive Energy, Good to GO!

Who or what inspires you?

1st – There is a single tree alongside the river near where I stay that truly inspires me. There is no other trees around it but yet it stands there tall each and every day without the support from any other trees. It has survived the harshest weather, the most powerful floods and stood tall and braved the strongest winds. It isn’t the biggest tree I have ever seen nor the thickest and strongest looking, but it refuses to fall down and continues to grow it’s roots. When I am going through a difficult time, I try and reflect my emotions or a situation like weather with the inspiration to stand tall and be brave like the tree.

2nd – My 8 year old self. I sustained an extremely nasty leg break at the age of 8 years old (tibia and fibia break in 3 places) which put me in a wheelchair and a cast from hip to toe. Being told that I may not walk properly ever again at that age was a difficult thing to hear but something I refused to accept. That 8 year old boy fought through excruciating pain, re learnt how to walk, jump, run, hope, balance and fell countless times and never gave up. I have sought inspiration from that little guy in so many moments throughout my life and despite always wandering “what if it never had happened”, I think deep down I am glad it did because there has been many times that I have had to seek inspiration from those events to get me through difficult times.

If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Salmon, jasmine rice, broccoli and cheese with a little dollop of brown sauce. It’s not my absolute favourite meal, but it is always my got to and one I would happily eat every day.

What advice would you give to someone looking to getting started in the industry?

Health and safety isn’t a position, it is a lifestyle and commitment. It is not the sort of role you can jump in and out of. You can put everything you have into Health and Safety but I feel that if it is genuinely for you, you will find a way to fulfil it and if it isn’t, the outcome of getting the role will dictate the results for you.

How do you unwind and relax?

Playing with my kids. This is probably the only time that my brain switches off away from the 100 mile per hour thought processes that happens across the duration of the day. Failing that, closing my eyes and getting some solid sleep. Whenever my eyes are open and there is a second to be utilised, I am thinking about something. I personally find it extremely hard to relax and unwind and it is definitely something I need to get better at doing.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Offft, there’s a question. In all honesty, as an individual, I am not too sure and it’s not really something I try to project on a personal level, however I am working through a 5 year plan on a movement and currently in year 2 with it and it is right on target with the initial vision. So at the end of the 5 years, I believe the world will be in a better place within the subject of both mental health a waste management. Watch this space…

Would you recommend a career in the HSE industry?

I don’t think you choose to have a career in the HSE industry, I think it chooses you. For me I have always been someone that cares for others and wanted to do “the right thing” and after working in different jobs across multiple industries, the HSE industry has a natural fit.

Thank you so much Mike, it’s great to know a bit more about you. If you have a question you would like to ask Mike or another member of the HSE People Panel let us know