PreAccident Investigation Podcast

The Pre Accident Podcast is an ongoing safety podcast conversation of Human Performance, Systems Safety, & Safety Culture.

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Saturday May 11, 2024

In this insightful episode, our host, Todd Conklin, presents a new envisioning of safety at workplaces. He emphasises the need to perceive safety not merely as avoiding accidents, but more importantly, fostering operational capacity.Todd emphasises the necessity to reform the investigative processes, urging to involve workers in learning rather than attributing blame. The dialogue gravitates towards studying regular workflows, a welcome deviation from the standard practice of only probing when mishaps occur.Leadership plays a key role in implementing these philosophical and methodological changes, despite inevitable resistance and nostalgia for traditional ways. Overcoming this barrier, leaders need to foster change and pioneer the path to progress. The value of several upcoming workshops, each offering chances to learn and improve upon safety practices, is highlighted.The role of safety within operations evolves from being a theoretical discourse to a focus on practical interventions. The challenge lies in the sustainable adoption of these new philosophies across the entire organisation in a pragmatic manner. This transition demands new ways of assessing progress and monitoring methods, underlining the importance of understanding our current standing.Building an organisation's capacity to fail safely, rebound from failure and ultimately sidestep predictable accidents is deliberated upon. Yet, this often clashes with organisations rooted in traditional safety philosophies, inhibiting their recovery capacity. Innovations in safety measurements and changing paradigms can help advance towards creating a strong, resilient and future-proof organisation, paving the way for continuous improvement.Finally, the entire process must factor in the unique characteristics of different sectors within the organisation while developing and implementing new safety measures. The ultimate goal is to test and apply innovative solutions to long-standing issues. This initiative invites everyone to partake in and contribute towards strategic change management practices and to remember the importance of learning, enjoyment, and most significantly, safety.

Wednesday May 08, 2024

In this episode, Todd Conklin delves into a unique phenomenon propelling safety regulations globally. Discussing the intriguing concept of 'sticky', an acronym for 'stuff that kills you', Todd highlights how this approach has impacted organizations and reinvigorated safety dialogues.
In a world where perfect conditions, processes, or people are not guaranteed, the 'STKY' approach encourages identifying the highest risks involved in a task. However, Todd emphasizes that the magic lies not in the identification but in the follow-up questions.
Upon identification of the 'sticky'—the deadliest risk, one ought to ask: 'When that bad thing happens, what keeps us safe?'. This paves the way to identify the essential controls for failing safely. The value of 'STKY' begins to shine through with the critical evaluation of existing safety measures.
In conclusion, Todd points out that the power of 'STKY' lies in the subsequent questions: 'What will kill you?', 'When it happens, what keeps you safe?', and 'Is that enough?'. He advocates for the need to keep learning, to be kind to each other, and above all, to ensure safety at all times.

Saturday May 04, 2024

In this enlightening episode, host Todd Conklin talks with Christian Gould from Norwegian energy giant Equinor. The central focus of their conversation revolves around the multifaceted Human and Organizational Performance (HOP) and its effectiveness across diverse cultures, industries, and geographical planes - with a heavy emphasis on the Scandinavian scenario.Gould elaborates on the need to contextualize HOP theories and practices in light of both language and culture. He navigates pivotal discussions on the cultural impact on high-stakes, high-potential events, and dissect how his team is facilitating it.Unravelling insights into how HOP ideologies have been adopted in Scandinavia, Gould notes the one-size-fits-all approach doesn't work. Instead, he walks us through the stumbling blocks they need to bypass, despite an initial perception of these principles being easy to implement.Furthermore, Gould introduces the listeners to tactics they employ to turn obstacles into opportunities, underscoring the impact of language and day-to-day operations rather than just focusing on the outcome. The conversation also veers towards the necessity of psychological safety within workplaces, the pitfalls of blame culture, and how to counter them.Listeners also get a glimpse into the success of learning teams at Equinor. The episode comes to a close with a powerful message - the potential for global principles like HOP to be remodeled according to various cultures and industries. Tune in for a valuable discussion on enhancing the comprehension and application of HOP.

Wednesday May 01, 2024

Welcome to pre-accident investigation safety moment with Todd Conklin, where we engage in thought-provoking and insightful discussions about safety. In this episode, Todd explores the concept of conflict in the workplace, not from an interpersonal perspective, but rather as it pertains to processes, practices, and procedures.Conflict areas within your system are often pain points - places where two goals collide. They are complex coupling points that put workers into a position where failure is likely to occur. This episode encourages leaders to seek out such points of conflict - places where the work system doesn't align or makes no sense.The interaction between workers and their operational procedures is critical. Todd shares an anecdote about airline employees discussing a new safety analysis document which, instead of reinforcing safe work practices, ended up hindering the employees and compromising overall safety.This conversation reveals how workers, the users of such systems, can give valuable input about the processes that make sense and those that don't. It is essential for bosses to tap into this wealth of information for the betterment of systems and safety.Catch more such intriguing discussions on safety from Todd Conklin in this episode and remember to practice safety, learn something new every day and most importantly, have fun!

Saturday Apr 27, 2024

In "The Evolution of a Safety Professional: Engaging Lessons and Perspectives," Todd Conklin hosts an enlightening conversation with returning guest, Nick Peasley. Two years after his initial appearance, Peasley comes back to the podcast, seasoned by experiences in the safety field, offering invaluable insights for new and veteran safety professionals. Their conversation revolves around the invaluable practice of expanding one's professional safety network. Peasley emphasizes the importance of attending safety organization events, such as those held by the NSC and ASSP, stepping out of one’s comfort zone, and engaging with other professionals. Building relationships, exchanging ideas, and sharing experiences are noted as foundations of a strong network - a crucial asset in the safety profession. Peasley and Conklin highlight the benefits of introducing oneself to local colleagues and peers. Expanding the network can open doors to opportunities, mentorship, and friendships which prove pivotal in career advancement. Mixing exploration of local and global professional networks, the seasoned professionals recommend a balanced approach to networking in the safety sphere. Further, the duo dives into the integral role of failure in professional growth. Peasley introduces the concept of "psychological safety zones" that welcome learning and constructive acknowledgement of mistakes. He underscores the significance of self-reflection in identifying failures and the need for effective leadership that guides through the failure navigation. The conversation culminates in a visionary outlook for the future of the safety profession.This engaging episode serves as an excellent resource for those in the safety field, spotlighting the roles of professional relationships, ongoing learning, self-reflection, and immersive experiences in propelling career growth.

Wednesday Apr 24, 2024

In today's episode, Todd Conklin talks about a profound reality everyone comes to understand with time and experience. This striking insight is about delving deeper into surface-level issues, to discern what's causing deeper-rooted problems in workplace scenarios. Todd shares an intriguing anecdote about a friend's team's struggles with trust-building which provides a springboard for this insightful discussion.Pivoting the conversation from a drawn-out trust-building exercise that ended up being unfruitful and counterproductive, Todd invites listeners to re-calibrate to a new perspective. He suggests that the problem might lie elsewhere. In fact, trust, or lack thereof, is just a symptom of a more profound issue. The real concern may very well be a lack of clarity regarding each team member’s mission, responsibilities, and deadlines, resulting in unfulfilled promises and agreements.This eye-opening talk challenges the listeners' conventional methods of problem-solving and pushes them to look beyond the obvious. Todd emphasizes that merely addressing the surface-level issues might not solve the underlying impediments in team coordination and project management. It's a call to peek under the hood and truly understand the dynamics of teamwork and the fundamental elements required to foster a trustworthy, efficient work environment. Stay tuned, and let's dive deep into identifying and addressing hidden issues that hinder team growth and productivity.Engage in our journey to make work-life safer and more fun. And remember all along: Be safe, be kind, learn something new every day, and above all, have as much fun as you possibly can.

Saturday Apr 20, 2024

In our latest podcast episode, we welcome Nicholas Dahlstrom, Human Factors Manager at Emirates Airline. He takes us deep into his role, managing cultural diversities in one of the world's leading airlines. With more than 100 nationalities on the flight deck, cabin crew and wider company, Dahlstrom explores the benefits and challenges of such varied workforce. Listen as he shines a light on the greater professional culture subduing national cultural differences, sharing the impact of Covid-19 on operations, and explaining his diverse role at Emirates.Our conversation touches base with Dahlstrom's insights into training pilots and cabin crew, supporting the staff, and participating in accident investigation. A fascinating journey into the intricate workings of Emirates, this episode is a must-listen not to be missed!Navigating CRM and Aviation Safety Training with Dr. Nicholas DahlstromJoin us in this exciting podcast episode where we sit in conversation with Dr. Nicholas Dahlstrom, a prominent figure in Aviation Safety Training and Crew Resource Management. Our discussion revolves around the current state and future of CRM, especially from the lens of Emirates Airlines where he has brought about significant change.Dahlstrom stresses the importance of adjustable training methods, the challenges of blending safety and efficiency in training, and the need to focus on human development while making organizational improvements. His insights prove invaluable for anyone intrigued by aviation safety, human factors, CRM, and the delicate task of merging traditional knowledge with innovative methods. Plug in as Dr. Dahlstrom illustrates the power of CRM in enhancing safety and boosting efficiency. A must-listen for all safety professionals!

Wednesday Apr 17, 2024

The next time you experience a potential failure or safety issue, pause and ask, "Who, within the working sphere, wasn't surprised by that?" Todd Conklin hosts the Pre-Accident Investigation Safety Moment podcast episode and emphasizes this query's importance. Unexpected safety issues or near-miss incidents can sometimes be anticipated by individuals targeted in your work environment, and recognizing these signals can guide you to improve precautions.Understanding that some employees weren't startled by the risks and closely examining these situations is key. Significantly, however, creating a psychologically safe atmosphere is crucial to encourage employees to communicate freely and genuinely. This episode aims at creating an environment where employees feel secure enough to admit that the eventual risk was foreseeable.Conklin further points out that fully grasping these 'low-level' or 'weak' signals and timely risk identification can prevent potential disasters. It therefore becomes the leadership's responsibility to ensure these almost unnoticeable signs aren't neglected and, instead, are proactively addressed. It also means refining the company's sensitivity towards detecting these quiet alarms earlier rather than after mishaps.Once safety risks are acknowledged, learning from them and implementing the necessary measures to avert future occurrences is the following step. An essential part of this process is identifying what employees specifically anticipated might go wrong. The information established as a result is valuable data that will drive safety advancement within the organization.This informative yet intriguing episode emphasizes the significance of continuous learning, mutual respect, fun, kindness, and above all, safety in the workplace. Join us on this safety-focused episode and learn how to improve your organization's safety approach today.

Saturday Apr 13, 2024

In this engaging episode, Todd revisits the genesis and evolution of the 'Fundamentals of Human Performance' class developed over 20 years ago at the Department of Energy at Los Alamos National Laboratory with teammates Martha Costa, Andrea Baker, and Bob Edwards. Together they reflect on the journey of this revolutionary concept, its global influence on safety practices, and the power of innovative thinking within a small group of committed individuals. The conversation provides an intimate look at the origin of their ideas, their growth, and their impact. It's more than a trip down memory lane; it's a testament to their ongoing commitment to global safety practices and standards.
Todd and his guests also delve into their transition from operational learning to 'Learning Teams' within their organization. Despite skepticism and pushback, they highlight their struggles, successes, and the lessons learned in implementation. They candidly discuss the stumbling blocks faced, such as blame culture, and how they ultimately successful in overcoming these issues. This segment encapsulates their views on accountability as a group effort, their learning experiences, and the evolution of their methodology over time.
The episode also hones in on some of their most groundbreaking solutions, including innovative ways to address efficiency issues. These industry trailblazers share their unforgettable 'eureka moments', the initial frustrations, and the broad impact they have had on an array of workplaces. The conversation intertwines their professional achievements with their heartfelt personal sentiments, providing listeners with a deeply moving and inspiring journey.
The episode winds up with a discussion on the joy of bringing about change and how credit becomes secondary when the true reward is the ability to make a difference. Tune in for a mix of thought-provoking stories, personal reflections, and insights into a journey of professional innovation that changed the dynamics of safety practices globally.

Wednesday Apr 10, 2024

In this enlightening episode, Todd Conklin explores the paradoxical concept that as a leader, not knowing can actually be a superior position to knowing. Sounds contrarian? Not in the slightest once you understand the reasoning behind it.The tenet of this discussion is founded on the notions of cognitive and confirmation biases - biases we unknowingly nurture. You might be wondering, "How is ignorance beneficial to a leader?" It's simple. Admitting ignorance gives you the licence to learn, often leading to you shedding your ego while entering a prolific phase of self-improvement.However, there is a common misconception that acts as a stumbling block for many leaders. It is the belief that displaying any form of ignorance is a sign of weakness, possibly raising questions about their competence. This episode aims to debunk such misconceptions, arguing that there is immense value in conceding ignorance and turning it into a powerful tool for learning.This intriguing discussion is topped with insights drawn from the scientific world, where every experiment stems from a state of not knowing. These scientists, open to learning and discovering, create fruitful research environments led by the spirit of curiosity and ignorance. Their attitude emphasizes the potency of not knowing – it propels you into a position where learning is more than just acceptable, it is actively sought after.Join us in this episode to challenge your preconceived notions and learning to embrace the unknown. Let's remember that every day brings new opportunities to learn, have fun, show kindness to one another, and most importantly, keep safe!

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