Start with the why...

I believe that any system which involves people is complex because we deal with interactions at a human to equipment level, at a peer-to-peer level, and at an individual to organisational level and these interactions can be misunderstood in both design and operation. Therefore, if we are to improve performance, we must consider the human in the system.

Having delivered training and consultancy across multiple domains and cultures with great success, I am a perfect partner for your business to develop their performance towards excellence. I have worked with front-line operational aircrew, senior business executives, cardiac surgeons & intensive care teams, and multinational oil & gas drilling crews in an offshore environment - all environments in which the risk of failure being realised can mean loss of life. However, just because failure can mean that, it doesn't mean we can't plan to fail safely, and this is an avenue I love exploring with leaders and their teams.

My experience and background

I am a retired Royal Air Force senior officer Navigator of 25 years, where I was both a senior supervisor and a tactical flight instructor on an operational C-130 flying squadron. I have a MSc in Aerospace Systems from Kingston University and spent his last 5 years in the RAF as a Requirements Manager for Defensive Aids Systems working across all levels of industry, reseach and the military from front-line user to very senior officers, both in the UK and in the US, often at highly classified levels.  

Shortly after leaving the RAF in 2014, I delivered eight months of Well Operations Crew Resource Management (WOCRM) training and coaching to oil workers in an offshore environment, the results of which were presented by myself and Phil Smith (Managing Director of Critical Team Performance) at the oil and gas industry's international (IADC Human Factors) conference in Houston. In June 2015, I completed the TOP-SET three-day Senior Investigator root cause analysis course to further develop my knowledge of how and why it makes sense to do what we do, even if it seems irrational in hindsight. The TOP-SET methodology is considered an industry standard in Oil & Gas, heavy industry, and rail incident and accident investigation.

In 2012, I started a self-funded part-time PhD, examining the role of human factors in scuba diving incidents. I am very much focussed on a practitioner's view of improving performance and have been published in a number of magazines and journals, presented at nine international diving conferences on Human Factors in diving, and manages the Diving Incident and Safety Management System incident database. In 2016 I was appointed Global Underwater Explorer's Director for Risk Management, responsible for developing the performance of instructors and instructor trainers and building a Just Culture within this learning-cultured organisation.

Finally, recognising that effective communications are key to performance, I became a certified trainer in the Process Communication Model (PCM) working with John Parr, Certified Master Trainer for PCM, to bring PCM to the UK. PCM is an award-winning behavioural and communications model used by NASA for 20 years as part of their astronaut selection process. It is the only tool which combines both behaviour/personality profiling and specific, individualised communication techniques to improve performance and reduce distress and conflict.

"Fantastic opportunity to reflect on ones own practices, team and leadership skills, his training enhanced team dynamics and effectiveness."

David Hepburn
Consultant, ABUHB ICU Team

"A much greater insight into key components of communication and understanding of non-technical skills. This programme really helped to separate them out from the clinical decisions which can then be handled retrospectively. "

Caroline Toolan
Cardiothoracic Surgeon

"The training not only reinforced my my correct, hard-won paradigms, but revealed new methods for team building, maintenance and improvement. "

Terrence Tysall
Director for Training, NAUI Worldwide HQ

"Truly two of the most productive days I have had in regards to personal and professional development. The best part about the training is Gareth provides students with the tools to take what has been discussed in the course and implement it in our own courses and dive teams. "

Jon Kieren
Training Director, TDI/SDI/ERDI

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