Sunday, November 15, 2020

Safety vs Profit

Safety vs Profit 
by Catalina9

One misconception in the aviation industry is that there are major conflicts between safety and profits. Conventional knowledge is that one cannot operate with an effective profit-margin system while at the same time operating with an effective safety system. Let’s for a moment assume that this is true and that for each safety system implemented there is huge reduction in profit and the profit margin. 

When the safety-card is played the SMS nucleus is unbalanced.

When the safety-card is played there are no opposition to their choice of corrective action plan. Nobody wants to argue against safety. When someone wants a specific result, they use the safety-card to get what they want, and they draw root-cause solutions from an emotional data base rather than a hazard registry or an analytic data base. The safety-card is played in the aviation industry, it’s played in the long-haul transportation industry, it’s played to protect public safety and it’s played when nobody has a true answer for their solutions to the issue or event other than a safety scare. The safety-card is a virtual tool without a major definite purpose and where the safety nucleus is unbalanced. 

A major definite purpose is defined as the one goal that is most important to you personally for incremental safety improvements of Your Amazing Airport or Airline. It is usually the one goal that will help you to achieve more of the other goals than anything else you can accomplish. The first part of a major definite purpose is something that you personally really want. Your desire for this purpose must be so intense that the very idea of achieving your major purpose excites you and makes you enjoy the associated projects. The second part it that it must be specific an explained clearly. It’s better to explain it clearly than cleverly. The third part is that it must be measurable. The only quantity to measure is in monetary value. A return on investment safety formula must be answered by dollar signs. The safety result is not that we got away with only one accident this year, but if the return on investment was in the black or in the red. The fourth part is that a major definite purpose must be both believable and achievable. It is a simple task to believe, or wish for an outcome, it’s hard work to achieve it. The fifth part of your major definite purpose is that it needs to come with a high probability of success. If you set a low or medium probability of success, there is little or no incentive to access tools for success. When you set your major definite purpose today it might look overwhelming and unachievable, but it is the only thing that keeps you moving forward at incremental steps to reach each goal to build a path to your objective. A final part of your major definite purpose must be in harmony with your other goals, and the Safety Management System (SMS) Safety Policy. In addition, it must also be in harmony with your sub-goals and congruent with the organizational just culture. The safety-card cannot be the major definite purpose since it does not state specific objectives or goals, but is a tool to generate vague visions, strong wishes, opinions, and reactions without directional control. A safety-card organization is recognized by their wishes to prevent accidents and eliminate damage or injury.

When looking at safety improvements from a safety-card organizational view, their statement is true that safety cost too much and is not practical to implement. In an organization without a major definite purpose the only solution available is to allocate more cash to the solve the problems. Since airports and airlines are safe already and flying being the safest mode of transportation, any additional cash-outlays are not required to maintain current level of safety in operations. Any accident free day is money saved and safety becomes an unnecessary expense. 

SMS is a compass to navigate the turbulent
seas while monitoring drift.

A Safety Management System (SMS) comes with a built-in major definite purpose, which is to design a just culture that is compatible with the safe operation of an airport or aircraft. An airport or airline establishing this as their main definite purpose has unlimited options available to operate within an acceptable safety margin. The safety-card only look at tangible improvements, while the SMS, in addition, looks at intangible solutions. Since intangible solutions are unable to be touched or grasped, there is no physical presence or visual clues, they are unpopular to implement.

The SMS is the human factors system, or human behavior. When looking safety from the SMS perspective as a capital investment of human behavior it becomes the major influencer of the return on investment. Safety in an SMS world is project solutions leadership motivation. Projects are established, solutions are implemented, leadership is dynamic, and motivation is to maintain goal-oriented behaviors. Within the SMS, the safety culture, or just culture, is measured in cash value and return on investment. Simply said, it is expected that a pilot uses the brakes when a taxiing aircraft is approaching behind a stopped aircraft. It’s expected that a pilot on approach stay on approach slope and it is expected that an airport operator has trained personnel to work airside. This is what SMS is all about. When applying SMS processes to operations there is no additional cost to complete these tasks, or other tasks. Every safety measure taken within the SMS is an action of human behavior within the human factor system where safety does not become an opposition to profit but a contributor.   


Monday, November 2, 2020

Building A Winning SMS Team

Building A Winning SMS Team
By Catalina9

Building a Winning SMS [Safety Management System] Team begins and ends with you. You are the person who holds the keys to open doors of data, information, knowledge, and comprehension.  Building a Winning SMS Team is to clear a path of least resistance within a hazard environment. While building the team is to clear a path of least resistance, designing the path is to incorporate a conglomerate of tasks and to navigate insurmountable hazards. A Winning SMS Team operates at a 95% confidence level that your human factors system is in control.  The difference between a 95% confidence level and a 100% confidence level that operational processes are in-control, is that there is no room for safety improvements at the 100% safe operational level.    

A Winning SMS Team is filled with energy.
 Building the Winning SMS Team started with a   blank   sheet of paper and a pencil on a cold October   12th day.   Designing a Safety Management System 
 is beyond any task of designing other types of   systems. SMS is a  team of human factors, human   behaviors and human  interaction which reacts   emotionally to interference  from outside sources.

 The first task when building the team is to design a   path where emotional reactions are acceptable.   During the pre-SMS times the aviation industry   conventional wisdom was that a pilot could make   emotional decisions for the safe operations of an aircraft. It was expected of pilots to have super-natural powers to make rational decisions to avoid hazards and manage hazardous operational conditions. Two prime examples that pilots were expected to have these powers, are the 1977 Tenerife Island disaster and the 1989 Dryden disaster. In both accidents the finding was that the pilots failed one or more tasks in one way or another by making emotional decisions rather than following procedures. Any person experiences an unexpected condition instantly has an emotional reaction to that event. The reaction could be undetected by the pilots or others, or they could be obvious to anyone. The story goes that in a single engine propeller airplane the propeller is a fan to keep the pilots cool…because they will sweat if it stops. 

The second task when building the team is to design a path where variations are acceptable. In the pre-SMS days, it was expected that all pilots operated an aircraft exactly the same way, that they identified hazards without individual deviation, that they all reacted exactly the same way with their hazard avoidance actions, and that the outcome of their reaction would always be incident-free. Airlines operated with a 100% confidence level that they were 100% safe 100% of the times. When operating with this as facts, as opposed to opinions, air travel became the safest mode of travel. Whenever major accidents occurred, they were brushed away as pilot errors by a renegade pilot who willfully disrespected expectations that airliners do not crash. Variations comes from common cause variations and special cause variations. A common cause variation is always present in the process. An example is the migratory bird seasons, where birds seasonally travel, causing a common cause variable in the spring and fall. A special cause variation is not present in the process but is an unexpected event which occurred at an unexpected location at an unexpected time. When special cause variations are acceptable is when root cause analysis management becomes available. In and SMS environment, special cause variations are forced by virtual reality in operations [training] or simple brainstorming sessions [virtual testing]. The fact that one person in an enterprise had decided on what process or procedures were operational safe did not ensure safety, but rather transferred human factor elements from pilots to process designers.  When variations are acceptable is when variations management, or root cause analysis becomes available.

The third task to build the team is to accept a just culture. A just culture are expectations of human behaviors within an organization. In the pre-SMS era, a just culture was what was considered by management what was just to their positions. 

Just Culture is to consider decisions from the past.
Management’s just-culture task became a task to protect their image and decisions which were contributing factors to the disaster. The task after an accident did not always become a fact-finding mission, but rather it became an accident motive-finding mission. When building a Winning SMS Team, a just-culture is what is just for the traveling public, what is just for customer service, and what is just for you. In a just-culture environment there is trust, learning, accountability, and information sharing. Without any of the four just-culture principles there is anarchy in operational safety.  

The fourth task to build the team is to accept learning, education, refresher, and training as pillars for continuous safety improvement. During pre-SMS times training was viewed as a task required to repair lack of knowledge, qualifications, or skills. Yes, it is true that pilots received recurrent training, but the intent of training was to discover and repair deficiencies rather than build on individually current job-performance skills to improve these skills beyond regulatory requirements. Within an organizational culture that embraces training, training becomes a non-punitive reaction to unintended operational events. E.g. if a pilot taxi across taxiway lights because the turn was missed, in a non-training environment a recurrent training due to the incident becomes the punitive action that a pilot does not appreciate. While the same scenario in a training-accepted environment, the refresher training becomes a welcome task for continuous job performance improvement. 

The fifth task to build the team is to accept personnel involvement or initiative. A person who is actively involved comprehend safety in operations at a higher level that a person who passively must accept demands from management to maintain their job. Involving a person is to actively involve the five senses of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. If one or more of these senses are removed from the involvement equation, there is an increase in organizational hazard level. 

The sixth task to build the team is to accept job-performance variances between individuals. Job performance variances are discovered by conducting non-disqualifying operational audits where individual review their findings for possible self-adjusting behaviors. 

Within these numbers are all answers to be discovered.
The seventh task to build the team is feedback    from you and feedback to you. Feedback         comes in all shapes and forms and is more 
 than a standardized feedback answer. Feedback is interaction between personnel, interaction within the enterprise environment, interaction with policies, interaction with project solutions and interaction with leadership motivation. Feedback is the Nucleus within an Enterprise   where positive and negative emotional charges       are balanced as sensed by the five sense. When      emotional charges are balanced an Enterprise    is operating within a user-friendly Safety Management System scaled to size and complexity of the Enterprise.

The beauty of a Winning SMS Team is their generous output of project solutions and motivational management. 


Safety vs Profit

Safety vs Profit   by Catalina9 O ne misconception in the aviation industry is that there are major conflicts between safety and profits. Co...