Mistakes happen. Each day, in every industry, someone gets something wrong. This fact is not surprising of course, as to err is to be human.
But what IS surprising is this: Most of these mistakes could have been easily prevented.
In The Checklist Manifesto, Atul Gawande speaks to the massive amounts of information available to us – and how we often don’t apply it purely because we’re overwhelmed by choices. And guess what? The more expertise you have in a given area, the more likely you are to overlook something basic (and have, in very non-technical terms, a “head-smack moment”).
An example from his book illustrates:
One Halloween, a young man came in to an emergency room with a small stab wound. They could see it was deep, requiring surgery, but all vitals were fine so it was not an immediate concern – until he stopped talking. And his blood pressure dropped. And he started to die. Upon opening him up, they realized the wound was MUCH deeper than anyone would have imagined. And they would have known this had anyone asked him a VERY basic question (which is supposed to be asked of stab wound victims but often overlooked): “What were you stabbed with?”
Had they asked, they would have heard this answer: “A bayonet.”
Ouch. That’s a strong argument for a checklist covering the basics, isn’t it?
But how does this apply to your business? Well, the same principle applies to every industry. There’s a basic set of criteria that MUST be met or else mistakes will inevitably happen. And sometimes these mistakes can be fatal.
At Heartwood, we take the checklist beyond the clipboard and provide visual cues to guide your technicians through various scenarios. When a simple error, a missed process could damage expensive equipment – or worse, people – having “just in time” training that’s portable, scalable and modular is a godsend.
A visual checklist manifesto in a 3D interactive format makes sure steps aren’t missed and shows what you should be doing – offering even better results, like in the video below.
Have you used checklists with any success in your industry? We’d love to hear about it!
Photo credit: Ahmed Basheer on Flickr