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What ails HSE?

HSE or EHS or any combination of these three alphabets are known for representing Safety, Health and Environment in general. But do they do that completely or only partially? In my last 40 years of experience, I have seen HSE everywhere only at a physical level, not an internal level. Maybe there are organizations that take HSE on both external and internal levels. My salute to them. But the majority does not.

Health is physical health. Safety is physical safety. The environment is the external environment. Period. As of now, the focus is on these elements only. HRs and Psychologists in organizations have been talking about “Mental health”; “Psychological/Emotional safety” and “Loving and caring environment” for decades, but it has still not reached the policymakers. This issue has landed in the same category of differences in opinions between psychologists and board room, as differing on the role of money in motivation. We know the facts, but we don’t change policies.

I doubt that anyone in any type of work does not know that physical health has no meaning if mental health is not taken care of. Physical safety has little meaning unless you feel protected emotionally in your organization against blame, criticism and bias. Similarly, a clean environment can not bring joy to your work-life till you feel loved and cared for in your surroundings.

I find policies and programmes missing to take care of these, in almost all organizations, whether small or large, that I know of.

It is interesting that Google also defines HSE like this - “Human systems engineering (HSE) is a field based on systems theory intended as a structured approach to influence the intangible reality in organizations in a desirable direction.”

The key difference is tangible and intangible. Currently, our focus is on “Tangible”, whereas no complete success is possible till we focus on “Intangibles” too. I have no solutions to offer. I just want to ignite a debate, so that we start talking about these anomalies. I am always ready to start a community, that feels what I feel. I feel that growth should be total, not only limited to career and money. My only aim is to #makingworkplaceshappier that will automatically make our lives happier and society better.

Are you ready to join the movement? Fix a free appointment to talk to me on

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