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In Safety at work do you use Critical Thinking Skills?

When you do Hazard Assessment or perform Pre-Job Hazard Assessment are you, using of critical thinking skills?  How many times have you responded too quickly to a HAZARD/Event or made a hasty business decision, only to find that you needed to correct yourself later because you didn’t think it all the way through? It happens to even the best workers, but having to backtrack and fix these kinds of avoidable mistakes costs you more than your pride — it’s a waste of valuable time.    So in Health and Safety how does this help US all prevent incidents?

It is defined as defines as the ability to remove all emotion from an issue and observe the facts objectively to make a logical decision — is clearly advantageous for business. P bar Y Safety noted that critical thinking helps employees gather all of the information required to analyze a situation, generate optimal solutions to a problem and get feedback from all the people involved in the situation.

·        Uses of Critical Thinking Skills Solving Problems, Making Decisions, and Planning Strategically.

·        Basic Steps in Critical Thinking Identify the central problem, question, or goal. Analyze the problem, question, or goal. Evaluate possible solutions, answers, or plans.

Critical Thinking for Problem Solving. The ability to think critically is a crucial skill set because an essential measure of an organization’s success is its ability to overcome problems. Explore what critical thinking entails and the mindset of effective critical thinkers.

Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally about what to do or what to believe. It includes the ability to engage in reflective and independent thinking. Someone with critical thinking skills is able to do the following : understand the logical connections between ideas. During the process of critical thinking, ideas should be reasoned and well thought out/judged.

Critical thinkers are open-minded, confident, decisive, not reliant on others’ approval and able to see past their emotions when making choices, To encourage your team to think critically, he advised asking employees how they make most of their decisions. Is it based on concrete proof, rather than a gut feeling? Can the decision be justified beyond the person’s intuition, or be supported by anything that’s not emotionally related? If a person can answer “yes” to these questions, he or she is engaging in a critical thought process.

Anyone is capable of learning and improving critical-thinking skills, but teaching your employees how to do this isn’t always an easy task, especially if, as a leader, you’re prone to quick, thoughtless decisions.

Brings New Ideas

When an issue comes up in the workplace, a common reaction is to assume that it falls into a predetermined category. Critical thinking does not make any assumptions, and using the process of critical thinking in the workplace removes the temptation to immediately classify every issue under something that has happened in the past. It forces employees and managers to look beyond conventional solutions and look for new ideas that can help to efficiently address problems.

Fosters Teamwork

The entire workplace can get involved in the critical thinking process. The more people that are involved, the more solutions your company will come up with.A diverse workplace can benefit immensely from critical thinking. Not only does it give a reason for people of diverse backgrounds to work together on product solutions, it also encourages teamwork and gives each employee a chance to impact the future of the organization. Critical thinking exercises promote workplace tolerance and can be used as part of diversity training.

Promotes Options

One of the benefits of critical thinking is that your company can develop multiple viable solutions to the same issue. This allows your company to offer a range of solutions to clients, and it also assists in workplace innovation. Several solutions to the same problem can allow your company to develop solutions that use the resources that are available as opposed to purchasing new materials. Customers benefit from having options to choose from in solving their problem.

Uncovering Spinoffs

Looking comprehensively at solving an issue brings up information that can be applied to many other situations. For example, a critical thinking exercise on how to handle a new manufacturing process may lead to ideas for other manufacturing methods. Once you get started asking questions in a critical thinking exercise for one topic, you begin to address other unresolved topics.

Critical thinking may simply be defined as the objective analysis and evaluation of an issue in order to form a judgment. It means exercising or involving careful judgment or judicious evaluation. It’s a skillful thinking that involves applying reasoning and logic to ideas one finds and opinions one forms and situations one experiences. Since critical thinking is a type of critical analysis and thinking about thinking, it involves intellectual criticism allowing business leaders to combine research and knowledge. Thus, in order to be an effective leader, one must be a critical thinker, because a critical thinker can be a better problem solver and a better decision maker.

Putting purpose and intent back into our Hazard or Safety problem solving:

·        Using data to drive decisions: Replace guesswork with facts and data. Add lead time to decision cycles to accommodate data capture and trending. Challenge decisions that materialize without supporting data.

·        Do your homework, and share it: Citing sources isn’t just a technique of academics, it’s the basis for making a strong case, helping explain pro’s/con’s of the decision at hand

·        Vet your conclusions: Get help from others. Diverse perspectives almost always ensure a more viable solution.

·        Know your SMEs: There are experts out there in your organization, and more than likely, outside it. Find them, and get to know them. Social media is a powerful way to accomplish that, just like the people and experts you will find on Linkedin.

·        Get past “face value”: Don’t settle for surface impressions. What are the root cause factors of problems you’re trying to solve? Can you get to the source issues, and address those? Think about mowing weeds in your lawn, vs. pulling them out, root and all. Which do you do?

·        Build your skills: Read. Or, better still, write. Have in-depth conversations on important, complex topics. Explore current events.

·         Prioritize “think time”: Time constraints will always be the enemy of deep thought. Try to “time box” your problem solving for top problems.

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