We are always reading newspapers articles that start with “Driver error kills 3″, or “Air Traffic Control error causes flight chaos”. Commonly the last person to do something – whether it is to switch an engine off or turn a valve on – somehow becomes culpable for causing damage to people, machinery, and business reputation. And, investigations almost always list the symptoms of the failure rather than the cause. Why is that?
We know that Human Performance errors can be actively and demonstrably reduced by:
- creating and reinforcing a systematic process to set standards and expectations for managers, leaders and employees.
- placing barriers to minimise the frequency and severity of events.
- removing and preventing errors and events and identifying and analysing important human performance gaps.
- planning for future improvements in human performance, designing and developing cost-effective and ethically sound interventions to close performance gaps.
- implementing those opportunities, and evaluating the financial and non-financial results.
An extract from the HP&L Human Performance Fundamentals training course:
- Humans are fallible and even the best make mistakes
- Error is predictable, manageable, and preventable
- Organisation influences behaviour
- Behaviours are reinforced
- Events are avoidable