This month we introduce you to Bruce Klafter, Senior Director of EH&S at Flextronics International, one of the members who helps make our network so unique.
Why did you join NAEM?
NAEM is one of the most effective organizations in this space. You get a lot of things you can bring back into your job and improve what you’re working on. It’s also very focused with a high caliber of members.
Has your environmental program received any awards or recognition? If so, what?
- 2011: Leadership Award, Sustainable Electronics Manufacturing Working Group, http://www.sustainability2015.com/?1094#10940; Energy Conservation Award, Guadalajara Facility, from the Mexican Federal Energy Secretary
- 2012: Business Towards Happiness CSR Award, Business Review (China based publication)
- 2013: World Excellence Award, from Ford Motor Company, awarded to their suppliers for exemplary sustainability performance; Green Office Certification, Penang, Malaysia
What is your biggest challenge in your current role?
Since I’m still new to the company, there’s a learning curve, not only in the operations I need to know but also with the people who make it run. Flextronics is a relationship-driven company and any EHS professional must establish key relationships. We need to get to know and understand the objectives and motivations of other individuals.
What advice would you have for someone entering the field today?
I would advise them to get as many diverse experiences as possible. Whether it’s with a for-profit or a nonprofit, you must learn to handle a number of different tasks and the related skills. Even if you concentrated in a certain area, you can bring a lot of value to your organization if you are capable of doing many things. Having this overview allows you to be more strategic - and creates better leadership skills. I’d also recommend that you take risks and insert yourself into other operations by volunteering.
What are the three words your spouse/colleagues/best friends would use to describe you?
Sense of humor, easy going, clear thinker.
What aspect to the natural world/environment impresses you the most? Why?
When I traveled to Costa Rica, I was impressed with the rainforest and diversity of nature that you find there. It was eye-opening and remarkable to see all of the plants, insects, animals, birds.