Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Accountable Executive – Straight Flush or Just An Ace As The Highest Card?

An Accountable Executive (AE) is betting it all on the organization.  The AE is betting on human factors in a just culture with zero tolerance to compromise aviation safety.  The objective of the game is to find the cards for a straight flush, where the Ace is the highest card.

An Accountable Executive is not an AE of a Safety Management System, but an AE of the Aviation Certificate. A certificate issued to serve the public in an environment where risks are managed to a tolerable level. Quality Assurance (QA) and zero tolerance to compromise aviation safety must not be left up to the rolling dice.

Accountability is to provide the best possible customer service and ensure that the organization has “what it takes” to do “what it takes”.  There is no secret that some organizations will rather blame on an outside and often fictional force than accept accountability.  When an organization look at other individuals to be accountable the senior management does not understand the old saying: “if you truly want to find out why employees are irresponsible, then stop for a second and look in the mirror”. It is true that employees, management and executives will mirror their superiors or mentors for approval.

Customers understand that there are risks in aviation, but they do not accept anything less than zero tolerance to compromise aviation safety.

The show can only go on when accountability exists. 
 An aircraft in flight is in its right element and doing what it was designed to do. A pilot has been trained to feel in the right element when flying the airplane. Passengers on a commercial flight or spectators at an airshow expect the pilot to perform with confident and accountability. Anywhere in aviation the public who are served expects accountability. Customer service is to provide customers with what they need.  In aviation, an operator is applying accountability to fill that need.

 At the end of the day, an Aviation Operator, that being an Airline or Airport Operator has to make a choice if the Accountable Executive will be a person who is just an Ace as the highest card, or if that person is a team player and look for the other cards to be the Ace of a straight flush, where the Ace is above the King. 

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