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“Average” is failure in disguise: The risk management conundrum

If Australian companies are to succeed in their efforts to truly and effectively manage risk and drive positive cultural change we must “kill off” the principles of reasonable practicability and reasonable management action.

For too long now employers have been lulled into this false sense of comfort that by doing all that is reasonably practicable that they are compliant and meeting expectations.

Well … this is just not true on any real measure.

I have been prosecuting and training extensively in the field of risk management and compliance now for over 20 years and I am convinced – beyond doubt, that companies are failing to come even close to their full potential because of their limiting beliefs and standards built around the principles of reasonable management action and practicability .

This observation is not unique to any industry either. Whilst it will vary in magnitude business to business or even site to site, this adoption of “average” is truly the biggest barrier I have seen to actual success in the achievement of aspirational outcomes.

I have never seen a business promote its services or products as reasonable or average – have you?

Yet, this is exactly what is promoted (and sadly legislated for) internally! Why such a disconnect? It actually defies logic and guarantees frustration and unnecessary vulnerability. To optimise and maintain a risk management system you have to take constant, strategic and massive action. There is nothing reasonable or average about that!

I challenge my audiences all the time – have you optimised even the foundational element of risk management, namely the proactive identification of hazards? No one – not one company has ever shown me they have.

Just look at how much additional work is done by employers after an incident. Why! Is it because they were not serious or it could not be done? Of course it was. It is just that companies consistently fail to acknowledge the extent of the challenge. They do what everyone else does. They become tolerant to half-fixes, which of course just breeds mediocrity. They unknowingly subsist in the world of average.

Until companies acknowledge that average really is a failure in disguise, no transformational change can occur. It is a myth that reasonable practicability is the goal or a solution.

To find out more about our Mock Court Programs, please give us a call on  1800 85 86 98 or contact us via our website today.

Written by Bruce Whitehead

What Others Are Saying About Mock Court

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“From The Moment We Sat Down You Had Our Attention”

Today was absolutely awesome!! From the moment we sat down you had our attention. You didn’t use scare tactics but you were very honest with the possibility of what can ACTUALLY happen out in the field and also who is potentially responsible…

Rachel Bellino, Seymour Whyte Construction

“Overwhelming Positive Feedback”

Excellent delivery and well suited to the target audience… Overwhelming positive feedback. Better than I anticipated.

Brian Selmes, Snowy Hydro

“A Valuable Experience For All Levels In The Team”

Feedback has been overwhelmingly favourable and unanimous view is that it was a valuable experience for all levels in the team.

Mark Whybro, NSW Fire Brigade

“A Brilliant Demonstration Of How Things Can Escalate”

Thanks so much for the Mock Court Session this morning. It was a brilliant demonstration of how issues can end up escalating if they are not dealt with appropriately and we have already received some brilliant feedback.

Emma Lovesy, Colonial First State