Changing the way we think about work is a vital step towards improvement and, in this sense, human performance is a continuous area of study for businesses that wish to flourish. But how is this human performance interpreted and, most importantly, built in an organization?
book entitled ‘The 5 Principles of Human Performance’ comes to provide exactly what it promises: It unveils chapter by chapter the building blocks of Human Performance, emphasizing on those principles which should be at the core of the reader’s thinking and training, in order to help organizational programs shift from the conventional approach of safety and reliability.
Written by Todd Conklin, who has spent 25 years at Los Alamos National Laboratory as a Senior Advisor for Organizational and Safety Culture and holds a Ph.D. in organizational behavior from the University of New Mexico, the book offers a critical look at the traditional approach of blame culture, questioning the dipole of fixing the worker VS fixing the system.
Drawing experience from his previous books, the author shares valuable insights after years of interacting with high-consequence industries to provide eventually and elaborate on five principles that really make sense: Error is normal, blame fixes nothing, continuous learning is vital, context influences behavior and how you respond to failure matters.
This is best summarized by the author himself who explained to SAFETY4SEA: “The 5 Principles book helps organizations ask this question in a different way: Did the mariners make bad choices or did the mariners have bad choices?”
As such, building on and expanding the idea of ‘Safety Differently’, the ‘The 5 Principles of Human Performance’ serves as a useful tool for leaders to question and reassess their current practices, as well as an excellent guide for new leaders who are at the beginning of their journey.
In this way, the book is ideally addressed to organizational leaders, executives, managers, safety professionals, and workers, as well as anyone interested in human factors.
Mariners have for too long been in a position where the question has been “What makes a good mariner make a bad choice?” No matter how this question was asked, good people would be blamed for a complex failure in an uncertain world. It seems like this approach needed to change – and the best way to get better answers is to ask better questions,
…the author said exclusively to SAFETY4SEA.
The 5 Principles of Human Performance is a simple, yet very effective way to help your organization change their perspectives on fixing the worker or fixing the system – It seems like it is time to focus on our systems by changing the discussion from blame and punishment to a more effective and fruitful discussion about learning and improving our operations.”