Author: Sjoerd Nanninga

In this article managing director Sjoerd Nanninga writes about the X-factor in safety. This article was originally posted on LinkedIn. 

Building connections with X

At the crossroad

Archaeologists love crossroads because this is where they find a lot of coins and goods. People met at crossroads to trade and to talk, and also to get help and to make new connections.

As the story about the X-factor in safety goes on, here is the following insight:

X is a crossroad, a place where we intersect, a connection.

‘Death in the desert.’

A better and more robust connection is another X-Factor in safety, and let me tell you why using another story from the personal development experience.

There is an exercise that is called ‘death in the desert.’

It is a group activity where you have to imagine that you are stranded in the desert after your plane has been crushed. The pilot, unfortunately, has not survived the crash, but all the others are fine.

So there are about fifteens priority sets and decisions to be made, and there is a correct objective order. The priority decisions will impact your life and death.

At first, people make the priority decisions on their own. And after they hand in their decision, the fun starts, because they have to make those decisions of priority as a group.

The decision-making process is highly refreshing from the perspective of personal growth.

For us, however, it is crucial to note that in nearly all groups, the collective effort does much better than the sole best individual.

There is only a rare odd case when a survival expert is present in the group, and for some reason, the group decides not to utilize his knowledge. Then the individual experts score higher decision efficiency.


When one plus one is three

Now imagine a group of experts globally working together on best practices and decisions to bring incidents to zero.

The decision is to be made about common general tactics and detailed issues that bother you (and everyone) every day. The connections among people, in this case, expand the level of just one site or plant.

When put together, people tend to share knowledge naturally.

The hard-learned lesson from one plant will organically flow to the other plants and can be immediately added into the daily practice of all the global plants. Thus if you genuinely elaborate together and put joined effort into decision making, the result would be near-perfect policies.


Tight knots of connections

The conclusion is obvious, better connections within organizations lead to more safety and efficiency in the field.

The X-factor of a solid collaborative network will result in a giant step towards zero incidents, a crucial one. And I do not mean the flyer on the information board explaining incident causes or recommendations.


To read the first part, click on this link.

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