Aviation is a high risk industry where even a small error can lead to losses to human lives , property and reputation. Industries like the Nuclear, Oil and Gas etc. which are also high risk industries need to manage unexpected events which can be disorganizing. It takes both anticipation and resilience to manage unexpected disruptions, a combination which is known as mindful organizing.
Organizations that are able to manage and sustain almost error-free performance despite operating in hazardous conditions where the consequences of errors could be catastrophic), with a positive safety culture are known as High Reliability Organizations (HRO). ‘What distinguishes reliability-enhancing organizations, is not their absolute error or accident rate, but their effective management of innately risky technologies through organizational control of both hazard and probability […]’ (Rochlin, 1993, p. 17)
There are five characteristics of HROs that have been identified as responsible for the “mindfulness” that keeps them working well when facing unexpected situations.
Effective leadership evaluations are key to the development and maintenance of a high reliability organization. Organizations that do not set specific and measurable goals, and do not change the way leaders are evaluated on those goals, do not sustain results. High reliability organizations hardwire evidence-based leadership evaluation tools, such as report cards and 90-day action plans, into their organizations and prioritize goals. This way, leaders are constantly challenging and improving upon themselves and how they respond to problems. This will ultimately drive a shared sense of resilience throughout the organization.
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