New faces at The Keil Centre
2001 started on a positive note, as four new members of staff were recruited to strengthen our existing team, and widen the range of expertise we can offer to our clients.
Chiara Amati, an Occupational Psychologist, joined us in January. A native of Italy, Chiara studied psychology at the University of Edinburgh. Chiara then worked as a research associate at The Koestler Parapsychology Unit investigating human volition and willpower. Chiara is currently completing a Masters degree in Occupational Psychology at Heriot Watt /Strathclyde Universities. She has joined The Keil Centre's human factors team, and works with Ronny Lardner.
Craig Simpson is a Chartered Psychologist with wide experience in the adult mental health field. He specialises in clinical psychology, including cognitive therapy and the treatment of anxiety disorders, low self-esteem and post traumatic stress disorder.
Craig has a particular interest in the application of clinical skills in organisations. He joins The Keil Centre in May 2001, from working for the NHS in Manchester and running his own private practice. Craig completed his undergraduate studies in psychology at the University of Edinburgh and his doctorate at the University of Manchester. A native of Edinburgh, he is looking forward to returning to his home town.
Gabby Wynne is a Counselling Psychologist, who originally trained at Monash University in her native Australia. She joined The Keil Centre's clinical/counselling team in March 2001 from a post in the NHS. Gabby has particular expertise in self management skills including pain management and rehabilitation, anger management and assertiveness skills.
Susan Lennon joined The Keil Centre as a Project Coordinator, working with Chartered Occupational Psychologist Christine Hamilton. Susan is a native of Larne, Northern Ireland and previously worked as a PA in the Promotions Department of a local radio station. In addition to her other duties, Susan is responsible for The Keil Centre's web-site.
Investors in People award
It would be worrying if a firm of Chartered Psychologists was unable to attain the nationally-recognised Investors in People (IIP) award. We encourage clients to invest in their people, so do we practice what we preach? There can be truth in the saying that 'the cobblers children are least well shod'.
So, to see if this generalisation applied at The Keil Centre, we submitted our people development processes to scrutiny by IIP's assessors. The good news is that we passed with flying colours. Examples of good practice identified by IIP assessors included involvement of staff in all aspects of the business, coaching and mentoring by directors, continuous feedback to staff and encouragement of staff to train each other.
Scottish Executive futures - Developing a personal career strategy
Am I in the right job? What are my chances of promotion? What should my next career move be? How can I maintain a balance between work and personal life? Am I 'on the career scrapheap' at 40? In a world of continual restructuring, technological advancement and organisational change, maintaining a sense of control over your career can seem difficult to achieve. From the employer's perspective, the need for a responsive and adaptable workforce has led to the development of a psychological contract which places responsibility for career development more directly with the individual. But do individuals have access to the knowledge and resources which allow them to plan and manage their own career?
Since devolution, The Scottish Executive has experienced significant change. Clive Martlew, Head of Corporate Learning is typical of a new breed of civil servants, recruited from outside the organisation to bring a fresh perspective to issues such as career management. Clive explained "we are increasingly expecting our staff to compete with external candidates for promoted posts. The Executive provides extensive learning opportunities, but people also need to be able to plan and manage their own careers in the Scottish Executive's internal employment market, as they would in the commercial world. That can seem threatening, whilst also providing new opportunities for career development. That's why we turned to The Keil Centre's Occupational Psychologists to design a series of workshops to help people take more control of their own careers."
The career development workshops are facilitated by Louise Clarkson, a Chartered Occupational Psychologist with years of international HR and management development experience. Their modular design allows time for individual reflection and follow-up work between sessions. Individuals' needs, style, values and strengths are profiled to determine personal career goals and priorities. The structured process allows them to develop a framework against which to assess career options and develop action plans. Time is also devoted to clarifying the organisation's needs, and how they can develop and promote themselves to meet these needs. Participants welcomed the time and opportunity to reflect on their life and career in a structured but supportive environment. Following the success of the first workshop series, a second programme is due to start in April 2001, with a waiting list for subsequent programmes. Contrary to some employers' concerns that career workshops will make people dissatisfied with their employer, they more commonly have the effect of affirming participant's original career choice. "I'll have to accept that I really am a civil servant at heart" joked one but at least I know where I want to focus my energies now".
Contact Louise Clarkson at The Keil Centre for more information.
Safety Culture Maturity - Effective employee involvement
bp Forties Pipeline System transports 40% of oil output from North Sea offshore production platforms to bp Grangemouth for processing. The bulk of the crude oil is then pumped to bp's Dalmeny and Hound Point Asset on the Forth estuary, and onto crude oil tankers for export.
Phil Joyner, bp's Asset Manager at Dalmeny and Hound Point, is a firm believer in the benefits of workforce involvement for improving safety and commercial performance. In late 2000, Phil wished to involve all staff in enhancing behavioural and organisational aspects of safety culture. Whilst the site has a good safety record, there is no room for complacency.
The Keil Centre's industrial psychologists ran a series of Safety Culture Maturity™ interactive workshops for the majority of the workforce. Participants characterised current levels of Safety Culture Maturity™, and identified practical, realistic actions to move Dalmeny and Hound Point's safety culture to the next level.
An unexpected outcome of the workshops was the extent to which participants learned how their individual behaviour contributed to overall safety ulture and safety performance, and quickly took ownership of safety improvement actions. In parallel to these individual examples of effective employee involvement, the management team have, on the basis of the workshop outputs, identified and implemented organisational improvements designed to have a positive impact on future safety performance.
As a result of Dalmeny's positive experience with Safety Culture Maturity™ improvement, the process is being rolled out to the rest of Forties Pipeline System business and is also nearing completion on bp's Bruce and Miller offshore platforms. Other projects are 'in the pipeline' in Norway and Singapore. Although developed in the UK oil and gas industry, the Safety Culture Maturity™ method is suited to other hazardous industries, and is also being applied by The Keil Centre in the heavy manufacturing and transport sectors.
Contact Ronny Lardner at The Keil Centre for further information.
Human factors in Asset Management - Integrating technology, organisation and people
Edinburgh Petroleum Services (EPS) is a successful Scottish technology-based company, providing international oil and gas industry clients with petroleum engineering software, and consulting and training for engineering and management.
In Autumn 2000, EPS was invited to provide an innovative Scottish-based ten-week training programme entitled Production Asset Management (PAM) for senior managers from Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), the Venezuelan state oil company.
PDVSA is a forward-looking company, and this PAM programme is the first time that structured training in Asset Management has been specifically tailored to the needs of the upstream business (the Production Division), where the "asset" to be managed incorporates everything from the reservoir to the refinery gate. The adoption of Production Asset Management is to ensure the optimal exploitation of petroleum production and reserves, and involves many disciplines.
Campbell Airlie, EPS Technical Director, created a programme involving a multidisciplinary team of tutors. Ronny Lardner, one of The Keil Centre ’s Chartered Occupational Psychologists, designed and delivered three days course input on organisational culture and structure, teamwork and the human and organisational factors that influence health and safety. Further PAM courses will take place during 2001
Contact Ronny Lardner at The Keil Centre for further information.
PRISM - European human factors network for the process industries
The Keil Centre has been chosen as one of the European co-ordinating partners for this three-year EU-funded network. The objective is the improvement of safety in the European process industries through raising awareness of, and sharing experience in, the application of human factors approaches and stimulation of their development and improvement in batch and continuous process industries. The network will create an extensive forum within which industry, universities, research centres and practitioners can collaborate to improve the flow of fundamental knowledge and practical experience in human factors, and identify areas for improvement by collaborative effort. All of the deliverables of the network will be tailored to provide practical guidance on good human factors practices as an aid for the process industries.
Contact Ronny Lardner at The Keil Centre for more information.