Introduction to the Challenge of Aviation Root Cause

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Time Constraints

This is a circular tour where people are time challenged which presents them from fixing the problem which will provide them with additional free time!

Many companies are caught in this catch-22 situation where whilst there are multiple disconnects, Often the organisation does not have enough “trained” people to perform the root cause analysis.

The Fire Brigade

People are often too busy fixing todays problems to address ongoing disconnects. Short term fixes are usually aimed at contributing factors without doing a root cause analysis. (Even if we add more people, with the intention to solve the situation the effort will usually not succeed since without training, additional resources are used ineffectively due to poor planning and scheduling.)

Reality Check

Whilst typically front-line staff may recognize a given problem, senior management often do not appreciate the dynamics of the same issue.

Often when senior management do understand the problem, they are pressured to deliver a quick fix to the situation.

We tried but ...!

Many people mistakenly hold the opinion that root cause is too complicated and doesn’t work as a practical tool.

Whilst it is not unusual to see complicated and cumbersome root cause analysis tools – Bowtie being such an example, whilst there are many tools available for RCA there are also a significant number of simplified tools which are simple to use.

If you have had an unsuccessful experience trying to work with RCA, please give it another try and use a simple approach – not to over complicate matters unnecessarily.

How Difficult is it to do RCA analysis correctly?

Root cause analysis is not just about how to solve problems. It should be about a basic understanding of the related exposures.

It takes time and practice to become a creative thinker and competent root cause analyst.

Reality check - most people form opinions based on very little information (consider this is essentially poor critical thinking).

The thinking process for most people runs very deep. It requires practice and a good thinking methodology to break out of the patterns to which we are accustomed.

When the majority of people (without RCA training) are evaluating problems there is a tendency to rush the process of thinking and often make decisions on an emotional basis rather than logical ones.

They make decisions without taking any RCA driven analysis and usually without a full understanding of the actual problem. (It is important to have patience with your colleagues and to work on helping them focus on facts and logic.)

Sofema Aviation Services provides both Classroom and Online Root Cause Training – for details please see & or email &

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