"It's the ability to foretell what will happen tomorrow, next month and next year - and to explain afterwards why it did not happen!"
It highlights the flaws in every prediction as none of us truly knows what the future holds. It’s probably wise to avoid claims about being able to “foretell what will happen”!
As we have all gone through the major challenges of recent times, and reflect on the impact, it may make more sense to learn the lessons of the past and apply these to the future instead.
In our own field of workplace compliance, those that went into the pandemic with a good grasp of management control of risk were well placed to adapt and overcome the new challenges. It was by no means easy and new lessons needed to be learned, but with robust processes and good safety cultures already, the speed of adaptation was amazing to watch, as well as to support.
The fundamentals of hazard analysis, risk assessment and proportionate control measures came to the forefront as FM and property management looked to keep essential operations up and running in a safe and effective way. As new and ever-changing guidance came from government and its own “expert advice”, the requirement for robust and timely reviews became ever more evident. How many versions are you now on of your own COVID-19 risk assessment and safe systems of work?
The future by its very nature is uncertain, but with sensible and proportionate risk management we can live and work in the knowledge that the future can be bright, hopeful and as safe as practicable.
There are never any guarantees in life, but this may be an essential and tolerable aspect in our shared experience of living. Here’s to the future and thank you to the valuable experiences of the past!