Are Safety People Lie-Detectors?
I have written previously about investigations and truth telling (https://safetyrisk.net/investigations-and-truth-telling/). Of course, if you understand investigations the IOSH way (https://safetyrisk.net/investigations-the-iosh-way/ ; https://safetyrisk.net/investigating-events-is-not-about-brain-farts/ ) there won’t be much truth telling going on. The brutalism of the IOSH approach to investigations (https://www.ioshmagazine.com/2021/06/15/how-conduct-effective-accident-investigation-interview ) guarantees its opposite. How strange this preoccupation with lying and yet adopting a method that fosters lying. Ah, the safety way! Wouldn’t it make a healthy difference is Safety could jettison its bullying and brutalism for a humanizing approach to safety. When your ethic is deontological (https://safetyrisk.net/methodology-and-an-ethic-of-risk/ ) and your ideology is zero, brutalism is guaranteed.
Perhaps IOSH could start with some fundamental research, maybe even a brief engagement in ethical/critical thinking would help. Ah that’s right, a discussion of ethics doesn’t even get a mention in the IOSH so called ‘competency framework’ (https://iosh.com/my-iosh/competency-framework/ ), neither does critical thinking. Poor olde safety so keen to be professional and competent but doing nothing professional about it. How interesting that ethics is the grand omission from any statement about zero or competence in safety! Of course, a lack of transparency about ideology is fundamentally dishonest and unethical.
If you want to better understand the nature of lying, truth telling and honesty perhaps do some research into the (Dis)Honesty Project (https://www.thedishonestyproject.com/ ). Goodness me Safety, don’t let solid research get in the way of seeking blame in investigation methodology. Maybe watch the video The truth About Lies (https://www.thedishonestyproject.com/film/ ), rather than the binary nonsense put out by IOSH. You know, it might even be helpful to understand a little bit about the psychology of fallibility (https://www.humandymensions.com/product/fallibility-risk-living-uncertainty/ ) and lying before one embarks on some crazy IOSH campaign about investigators as lie-detectors. How predictable that Safety parades its incompetence and unprofessionalism so willingly when it comes to post event review. How fraudulent to play investigator/lawyer with no competence or role definition as such.
When we really do research about the psychology of lying and fallibility, we learn that common methodologies for investigation used in safety don’t work! (https://www.humandymensions.com/product/it-works-a-new-approach-to-risk-and-safety/ ).
Wouldn’t it be different if Safety actually research something about the nature and psychology of fallibility, motivation, goals and lying? Here is start:
The more you read this IOSH approach to so called competency and investigation-for-lying, the more embarrassing and un-professional it looks. One thing is for sure, if I was looking for professionalism in investigation, ethical conduct and competence in the psychology of lying, I wouldn’t be turning any attention to IOSH or AIHS.
To start, perhaps Safety could think about role definition. What is the purpose of safety? To play lawyer? I don’t think so. It is an assumption of IOSH that Safety should play the role of lie-detector, really? What a strange claim, with no capability or competence to support such a claim.
Defining role is the beginning of ethics, especially the nature of power-in-role. Unfortunately, you won’t find such a discussion anywhere in safety, not in the AIHS BoK, IOSH Capability Framework or the INSHPO Capability Framework. What an embarrassment that neither the INSHPO Capability Framework or Literature Review (https://www.inshpo.org/work ) have nothing at all to say about ethics! Not surprising, neither document has any discussion about fallibility, such is The Love of Zero (https://www.humandymensions.com/product/for-the-love-of-zero-free-download/ ). When your ideology is zero, the last thought for discussion is ethics. There can be no thought about ethics when your ideology is brutalism.
Similarly, all these documents have no discussion of power either yet plenty of propaganda using the word ‘professional’ as much as possible. You can repeat the word as much as you like, it doesn’t make it so. Safety has a lot of work to do and change in identity before it can ever make the word professional meaningful.