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Featured Insights

By Propulo Consulting

By Emily Wood Many high-risk industries have carefully studied thousands of near miss, accident, and incident reports, finding most were very similar. Investigations found the same causes of error influenced people to make mistakes, and if they changed the date, location and employee names, the same accidents and incidents were seen again and again. This blog speaks to five of the most common preconditions for human error (in no particular order) and identifies some countermeasures various industries have identified to combat such error. The American Institute of Stress found 83% of US workers suffer from work-related stress and US businesses lose $300

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By Josh Williams, Ph.D. Leaders demonstrate true safety ownership by spending time in the field asking safety questions with employees. This practice should be formalized across leadership groups, from supervisors to the C-Suite. These “listening tours” involve two-way dialogue to better understand employees’ safety suggestions, concerns, and opinions. The purpose is to bolster relationships and actively listen. It is not an enforcement activity or traditional safety audit.  When done effectively, these tours create more frequent and higher quality leader-field engagement. This leads to better relationships with workers, improved overall communication, better decision making with safety, higher morale, and additional discretionary effort with less division between the office

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By Josh Williams, Ph.D. Three-way communication is a technique used to ensure the reliable transfer of safety information in dangerous situations like confined space entry or working at heights. With these tasks, human error or poor communication may lead to serious injuries or fatalities. Use three-way communication when providing and receiving critical information in error likely situations, directing equipment operations with dangerous tasks, and instructing others when they are performing high-risk jobs. As an example, mountain climbers regularly use three-way communication with each other using carabiners to ensure they are properly tied off so that they don’t fall off the mountain. They are continually checking, verifying,

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By Eduardo Lan In my work as a safety culture and leadership consultant with Propulo Consulting, I often hear clients complain about how busy people are with meetings and paperwork and how little time they have for other things, such as getting out in the field. In this complex and fast-paced world of ours, it is normal to feel like this. At times, it seems like the number of emails, meetings, deadlines, and projects people are responsible for is never-ending. Dealing with it is a fact of life. However, there are things we can do to prioritize and act on what

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By Josh Williams, Ph.D. Consider this true-life story. “Bob” works for a soft drink bottling company and part of his job is making sure the production lines keep running. A very large, heavy labeler automatically cuts labels and affixes them to the bottles. However, the labeler gets glue caked up on it which makes cutting the labels impossible. One day, he attempts to remove the glue with a rag without first locking out the line. He mistimes it and loses a finger and a half. Finish this sentence: Bob is  _____________. And now for the rest of the story… There were a number of

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By Emily Wood When it comes to improvements in safety, few industries have done as well as aviation, particularly when it comes to embedding organizational learning. Throughout the 1970s, the aviation industry saw a decline in aviation accidents resulting from failures in technology, however, little improvement was seen in the decrease of accidents resulting from flight crew performance. At the time, flight crew performance was listed as a causal factor in more than 70% of all aviation accidents. By focusing not only on technological improvements but organizational culture and human performance, learnings from near misses, incidents and accidents have decreased aviation

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