Errors LO12239
Tue, 28 Jan 1997 11:00:35 -0500 (EST)

Replying to LO12195 --

About a pattern of errors David writes:

> The characteristics are:
> - Simple, repetitive jobs
> - Done by experienced, competant people who know how to do them right
> - After, the person's self-analysis "I was was on automatic."

Some thoughts on this passage:

1. The assumption that the job is simple may be part of the problem. The
term "simple" requires a context, i.e. simple compared to what. Why
exactly do you think think that because something is simple and repetitive
that it should be done correctly every time? Slicing carrots is simple
and repetitive but people still cut themselves doing it.

2. Another assumption that may need examination is that if competent
people know how to do tasks correctly they will do them correctly.
Automobile drivers are given a license only after they are shown to be
competent (Well, except for New York). Every licensed driver is competent
under the law, but they quite often do not perform the task of driving

3. As to the self analysis, it is far too easy to fixate on the first
cause we find and ignore the process of analysis. I may be reading too
much into your statement, but if you are relying on the analysis of people
who you consider incapable of completing simple repetitive tasks then
there may be a problem with the answers you get. Analysis requires data,
discipline, knowledge, and motivation.


Lon Badgett "A man who owns an electric saw can cut wood faster than a man who doesn't, but only if he has electricity, he doesn't lose or break his saw, he has some wood to cut, and he has a mind to cut wood." Emil Gobersneke

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <> -or- <>