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Our staff have been at the forefront of the development of Behavioural Based Safety in Europe, since the early research in the UK at UMIST in the 1990s by our Consulting Professor, Dr Tim Marsh, through the 2000s to the present day. Over this time we have seen the market requirements mature and evolve to the point where Behavioural Safety is now seen as one element of a wider organisational development approach we call Cultural Safety™.

This wider approach pulls together what we’ve all learnt through many implementations of Behavioural Safety over the years and around the world. It encompasses Safety Leadership, Process Safety and best practice in the Human Resources area as well as Behavioural aspects of Safety. So whilst Behavioural aspects of safety continue to be a core element we now look well beyond behaviour alone into how the other elements of an organisation’s culture interact and affect safety performance.

RyderMarsh OCAID Limited has a team of specialist Principal Consultants in the areas of Behaviour Based Safety, Human Factors, Incident Investigation, Leadership and Research; all of whom have experience working with a wide range of international organisations from many different industries including the nuclear industry, marine, pharmaceuticals, chemical, construction industries, transport, manufacturing and many more.


How we approach Cultural Safety™

RyderMarsh OCAID approaches culture change through a unique Cultural Safety™ Programme framework that is used to develop and maintain an effective safety culture.  It is built up in three sections; Culture, Leadership and Process.

CS 3 Parts

Figure 1 Elements of Culture surrounded by Leadership and Process

Culture is one of the greatest drivers for behaviour as human beings so we start by analysing the core elements of culture.  We then look at the Leadership approach needed to enable change and the Processes that can be used to change culture.

Model Elements

1    Culture

Culture is such a vast subject that in order to understand where issues are, we need to break it down.   We consider culture in four key areas; Beliefs, Language, Rituals and Artefacts.  The reason for this approach relates to the study of Sociology and Anthropology, where a significant difference in any single area would be an indication that the two cultures would themselves be different.  The advantage of taking a cultural approach to safety is that as well as the behaviours (Rituals) we also look at the things that have the most significant effect on behaviours, so we are dealing with root causes and not just symptoms.


2    Leadership

The group of people with the greatest effect on culture, and indeed the ability to influence change in the key areas, is the Leadership within an organisation.  Within the Cultural Safety™ programme ‘Applied Leadership’ refers to the tools that we need to successfully complete this change.  Developing these skills with anyone involved in cultural change is essential if we want people to really engage with the process and help to make the changes to the safety culture we are looking to achieve.



3    Process

Understanding of culture is valuable in its own right but the programme follows through with tools that can be used to support culture change.  The process elements and tools are iterative and consist of Identify, Measure, Analyse, Design and Deliver.  One outworking of this process is to implement Workplace Improvement Teams that are typically 80-90% frontline staff.

Cultural Safety™ Programme improvements often commence with listening to what people think, observations and historic issues.  A typical course includes Safety Conversations, Observations, identification of key behaviours and introduction to the RyderMarsh OCAID PI Process.