Tag Archives: systems thinking

Work-as-Imagined Solutioneering: A 10-Step Guide

Have you ever come across a ‘problematic solution’ that was implemented in your workplace, and wondered, “How did this come to be?” Wherever you sit in an organisation, the chances are that you have. Many problematic solutions emerge from a … Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bonding and Bridging at the Philosophical Breakfast Club

On 26 April 2018, I presented at the ‘Philosophical Breakfast Club’ (@philosophicalBC) conference on High Performing Teams (#PBCHPT2018). It was a remarkable conference bringing together healthcare professionals, psychologists, sports scientists, athletes, managers, human factors/ergonomics specialists, military officers and specialists, and others, My first conversation while having tea before the conference was with a spinal surgeon and bomb disposal expert. Throughout the conference I had many other fascinating conversations with people from a diverse range of backgrounds.

This leads me to the focus of my talk: collaboration at the interfaces, and what happens between teams, groups, professions, layers of management, organisations…  In this post, I summarise the talk, slide by slide, with tweet-sized explanations. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Organisational Homelessness of ‘Human Factors’

Most fields of professional activity have a settled home within the divisional and departmental structures of organisations. Operational staff work in operational divisions. Engineering staff work in engineering divisions. Everyone else tends to know their place: finance, human resources, legal, … Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Four Kinds of Human Factors: 4. Socio-Technical System Interaction

This is the fourth in a series of posts on different ‘kinds’ of human factors, as understood both within and outside the discipline and profession of human factors and ergonomics itself. The first post explored human factors as ‘the human … Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, systems thinking | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

The Varieties of Human Work

The analysis of work cannot be limited to work as prescribed in procedures etc (le travail prescrit), nor to the observation of work actually done (le travail réalisé). Similarly, it cannot be limited to work as we imagine it, nor work as people talk about it. Only by considering all four of these varieties of human work can we hope to understand what’s going on. Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Human Factors at The Fringe: My Eyes Went Dark

Written and directed by Matthew Wilkinson. A thrilling modern tragedy about a Russian architect driven to revenge after losing his family in a plane crash. Cal MacAninch and Thusitha Jayasundera give electrifying performances in this searing new play about the … Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Never/zero thinking

There has been much talk in recent years about ‘never events’ and ‘zero harm’, similar to talk in the safety community about ‘zero accidents’. It sounds obvious: no one would want an accident. And we all wish that serious harm would not result from accidents. But as expressed and implemented top-down, never/zero is problematic for many reasons. In this post, I shall outline just a few, as I see them. Continue reading

Posted in Human Factors/Ergonomics, Safety, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments