Friday’s Change Reflection Quote - Leadership of Change - Adhere to Safety Critical Processes


Happy Friday!

On this day, March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez, a 987-foot oil tanker, ran aground on a reef off the Alaskan coast and ripped holes in its hull, spilling crude oil into Alaska’s Prince William Sound. The super tanker spilled over 10.8 million US gallons (257,000 bbl) of crude oil with reports of a five to eight-mile slick. At the time, it was the largest single oil spill in U.S. waters. Initial attempts to contain the oil failed, and in the months that followed, the oil slick spread, eventually covering about 1,300 miles of coastline. It was estimated that the spill killed 250,000 seabirds, nearly 3,000 sea otters, 300 harbour seals, 250 bald eagles and up to 22 killer whales.

The ship strayed 1.5 miles from its approved shipping lane before crashing into the reef and was a man-made disaster. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation into the accident focused on the failure of the third mate to manoeuvre the ship correctly, because of fatigue and excessive workload. The report stated, “The Safety Board considers the reduced manning practices of the Exxon Shipping Company generally incautious and without apparent justification from the standpoint of safety. The financial advantage derived from eliminating officers and crew from each vessel does not seem to justify incurring the foreseeable risks of serious accident.” From my experience, lessons learned typically include three key components: prior risky cost-cutting (maximising profits), processes that were not followed, and the likelihood that something similar will occur again. Adhere to Safety Critical Processes.

“Safety critical procedures or processes should be adhered to and have independent governance. The consequences of optionality can be deadly and costly”

The lack of good governance, accountability and oversight can be extremely important during organisational change implementation. Governance covers the systems and methods of how the change programme will be authorised, monitored, and supported by its sponsoring organisation. Programme governance refers to the structure, practices and processes which ensure that the change programmes are managed effectively and consistently throughout their life cycle. Governance is achieved through the actions of a review and a decision-making body that is responsible for approving recommendations made during the change implementation.

Have a fantastic weekend with the ones you love and care for, enjoy some fresh air, exercise, eat drink and be happy.

Further Reading: Change Management Handbook - Leadership of Change Volume 3

Peter consults, speaks, and writes on the Leadership of Change®. He advises CEOs on how to prepare and align their corporate leadership teams to successfully lead their organisation's change.

For further reading please visit our websites: Peter F Gallagher: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle

Leadership of Change® Body of Knowledge Volumes: Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK) Books: Volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, A, B, & C available on both Amazon and Google Play:

Leadership of Change® Volume 1 - Change Management Fables

Leadership of Change® Volume 2 - Change Management Pocket Guide

Leadership of Change® Volume 3 - Change Management Handbook

Leadership of Change® Volume 4 - Change Management Leadership

Leadership of Change® Volume 5 - Change Management Adoption

Leadership of Change® Volume 6 - Change Management Behaviour

Leadership of Change® Volume 7 - Change Management Sponsorship

Leadership of Change® Volume A - Change Management Gamification - Leadership

Leadership of Change® Volume B - Change Management Gamification - Adoption

Coming soon:

Leadership of Change® Volume C - Change Management Gamification - Behaviour

~ Leadership of Change® Volume D - Change Management Gamification - Sponsorship

~ Leadership of Change® Volume E - Change Management Gamification - Leadership Teams

By Peter F Gallagher

Keywords: Business Strategy, Change Management, Leadership

Share this article