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What’s the Difference between a Safety Professional & a Safety Manager?

The Institute for Safety and Health Management (ISHM) administers internationally recognized professional certifications for safety managers.


The Institute for Safety and Health Management (ISHM) has dedicated the last decade to promoting the advancement of safety and health management in the workplace.  A key component of this effort is the ISHM’s coveted Certified Safety and Health Manager (CSHM) certification program.
Is there a difference between a safety professional and a safety manager?  This question is one that the ISHM is often asked.  Although there is a fair amount of overlap and a good safety professional is usually a good safety manager and vice versa, there is a distinction.  One way is to look at a few differences between the certification program design for the Certified Safety Professional (CSP) and the ISHM’s Certified Safety and Health Manager. 

  •    The CSP demands a high level of environmental, health and safety (EHS) technical knowledge; the CSHM is focused on ability to apply EHS improvement skills to operations. 
  •    The CSP requires in depth command of EHS engineering principles; The CSHM requires command of a broad range of management related skills such as communication, human resources and business principles in addition to technical EHS knowledge. 
  •    The blueprint for the CSP exam focuses on identifying, assessing and managing risk; the CSHM’s exam blueprint is focused on EHS management improvement systems – planning, implementing, managing and correcting issues. 
  •    The CSP is highly skilled at EHS fundamentals (safety, industrial hygiene, environmental and security); The CSHM is highly skilled at employing management related knowledge and skills for EHS improvement in a business environment

 “Both the CSP and CSHM designations indicate a high level of achievement and competence,” reported Tom Slavin, CSHM, CSP, Director of the ISHM. “The fact that many EHS management professionals hold dual certifications attests to both the complementary nature of the certifications and the fact that they are different.”
To learn more about the Institute for Safety and Health Management or the CSHM, ASHM and CSMP programs, please visit, email or call (877) 201-4053.
About the Institute for Safety and Health Management
The Institute for Safety and Health Management is the premier credentialing organization founded to promote the establishment of standards and recognition of safety and risk management professionals.  Through the ISHM’s certification programs, Certified Safety and Health Manager (CSHM), Associate Safety Health Manager (ASHM) and Certified Safety Management Practitioner (CSMP), it promotes the advancement of safety management through the application of management principles and the integration of safety into all levels and activities of management.


 EHS Manager
 Safety Manager
 Certified EHS Manager
 Safety certification
 accredited certification

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