implementation of PPI

Those who are considering implementation of a human error reduction initiative are often confused about HOW to do so in an effective manner.  Oftentimes, under pressure to “get something going”, those tasked with implementation will gather info from the internet, books, colleagues and/or conference presentations, and will “take their best shot.”

Unfortunately, when it comes to gathering info about HOW to implement a human performance initiative, the majority of information currently available describes the “old school” top-down compliance-based approach.  Additionally, there are still many consultants out there promoting techniques and strategies from years past.

If you are at the very beginning of implementation, have implemented and are looking for “what’s next”, or have a fully developed human performance or behavior-based safety program that is not delivering satisfactory (or stagnated) levels of performance, this section is for you.

NOTE:  If you are new to the concept of Practicing Perfection®, and have not yet read “The Practicing Perfection Approach”, go there now.

A Complete System for Achieving and Sustaining Next-Level Human Performance™

Mike Blevins, retired COO of Luminant, recently offered his opinion of the Practicing Perfection® approach to attendees of the 2012 PPI Users’ Group Conference in Galveston, Texas:  “This is the only human performance approach I’ve ever seen that is the whole deal.  When you look at the total package of what Practicing Perfection® does, all of the components work together to create a complete system.”

The Practicing Perfection® approach provides a complete set of strategies, tactics, implementation methods and tools with which to:

  • Fully understand your challenges and the error-likeliness of your current culture
  • Capture and develop genuine leadership support and sponsorship
  • Develop leader ability to proactively engage others and influence behaviors
  • Transform team member perspectives regarding their roles, responsibilities,  and opportunities by expanding their context and getting them to “think different”
  • Develop Proactive Accountability™ at all levels, and move the organization fromcompliance to discretionary effort
  • Focus upon vital behaviors, develop a Code of Honor™ for each natural work team, and use the Viral Change Model to effect rapid and sustainable behavior change (the key to culture transformation)
  • Virtually eliminate the potential for consequential human error through uncompromising use of the Error Elimination Tools™
  • Proactively coach and engage team members based upon the core principles of the organization
  • Fully develop and capitalize the linchpin to day-to-day performance- the front line supervisor
  • Actively promote and recognize worker contributions to the removal of landmines and efforts to enhance safety and efficiency
  • Document, analyze, track and trend human performance data as a means to grow organizational accountability, learn and gage progress
  • Transform the culture of your organization and sustain upward momentum in performance

Diagram of Practicing Perfection® Implementation

For a full-sized downloadable version of this diagram, click here.

Determining Your Current Culture Gap

Before beginning any journey, it’s essential to identify two things:  (1) your starting point (your current culture), and (2) where you want to get to (your desired outcome).  This is critically important to the efficiency and effectiveness of your efforts, because as the Cheshire Cat warned us, “If you don’t know where you’re headed, any road will take you there.”

Your Starting Point

The Practicing Perfection® Culture Profile is the tool we use to identify your current challenges, opportunities, and strengths.  The process involves gathering data through an online survey, conducting interviews, and completing observations.  The information is then synthesized and analyzed, producing a Culture Profile that quantifies the error likeliness of your organization in five key areas:

  • Systems and Structures
  • Commitment and Caring
  • Openness and Awareness
  • Error-Likely Environment
  • Willingness to Learn

Your Desired Outcome

Many organizations launch into human error reduction / human performance enhancement initiatives without clearly and effectively identifying WHY they are doing so, and WHAT their specific targets are.  We assist our clients in answering these questions at the outset.

The difference between the starting point (where you are currently) and your desired outcome (where you want to get to) defines your Culture Gap.  This insight is then used to develop your implementation flow path, including areas of current challenge, specific opportunities available and strengths to be capitalized upon.


As indicated in the Practicing Perfection® Approach, a fundamental aspect of this method of transforming human performance is getting people to not only, “think different,” but also to “do different.”  This is critical in order to move from compliance to discretionary effort, and do so in a manner that is sustainable.

The first stage of implementation therefore involves interactive education to expand team member and organizational context and develop a foundation of awareness and understanding, as well as creation of a Code of Honor™ for each natural work team.

We begin with Leadership Team Training, which is attended by all designated leaders (front line supervisors and above).  This lays the foundation for sponsorship and role modeling from the top through the middle of the organization.  The Leadership Team will create itsCode of Honor™ during Leadership Training.

Principle-Based Mentoring™ (PBM) includes a classroom phase and in-the-field coach-the-coach mentoring.  This serves to fully develop the skills necessary to proactively recognize and reinforce desired behaviors in the field.

Next is Mastery Training, which is attended by ALL members of the organization (including those who attended Leadership Training).  Organization members attend this training with the other members of their natural work teams.  Each natural work team will create its own Code of Honor™ during this session, as well as identify a specific landmine (challenge) to tackle when they return to work.


New awareness and understanding must be coincident with, and followed up with targeted consistent and coherent ACTION.

  • As previously indicated, we will work with you to fully understand your desired outcomes, and to then develop mechanisms and metrics to track your progress.
  • During each of the Mastery Training sessions, the expectation for use of the Error Elimination Tools™ while doing work is developed and reinforced.
  • Learning is critical to Constant and Never-ending Improvement.  The Practicing Perfection® approach includes sane and effective ways to learn in several different capacities (as indicated in the Implementation Diagram).  All associated mechanisms and systems are designed to be proactive (vice reactive) and to promote and develop a just culture.
  • We will work with you to develop the attitudes, skills and abilities of your front line supervisors and above to proactively engage workers on an ongoing basis.  Properengagement is where the lion’s share of benefit comes from in an observation/coaching effort (NOT from a bunch of data accumulated in a database).  This being said, we will also assist you in developing / modifying a system for monitoring your observation/coaching processes.
  • Practicing Perfection® Continuous Improvement (PPCI) is a very simple system for expecting, promoting and recognizing worker contributions toward removinglandmines, improving safety, eliminating waste, improving efficiencies, etc.  We will work with you to establish and grow this system as appropriate for your organization.
  • The linchpins to day-to-day performance within any organization are the Front Line Supervisors (FLS).  The Practicing Perfection® approach therefore places a great deal of Proactive Accountability™ directly on their shoulders.  The mechanism for doing so is the FLS Engagement process, which creates a regular opportunity for each FLS to present the human performance results of his/her team to senior organization leaders.


A fundamental element of the Practicing Perfection® approach (and of achieving Viral Accountability™) is Peer Leadership.  This is where worker ownership of the facility, the equipment, and the processes comes to fruition.

While the Code of Honor™ generates and reinforces a great deal of Proactive Accountability™, ownership, and Peer Leadership at the natural work team level, over time, human performance has proven as well as anything we’ve seen that across an organization…gravity works.

The Champion process involves additional training for a group of volunteers (solicited during the previous training sessions).  This training, which is scheduled immediately following the final Mastery Training session, offers  Champion Team members additional insights intoinfluence, as well as in how to promote and support human performance across the organization.

During this session, Champion Team members will brainstorm and develop plans for their first project(s), thereby beginning an essentially immediate process of reinforcement.


Sustainability has typically been one of the greatest challenges associated with reducing errors and elevating human performance.  By taking advantage of basic human and organizational characteristics, the core of the Practicing Perfection® approach has been designed to develop, support and capitalize upon behavioral and cultural elements that last.

Do it Yourself or Bring in Some Help?

Whether to “do it on your own” or to hire external expertise is an important question to answer if you are serious about taking the human performance within your organization to the next level.

Two important questions to ask if considering implementation on your own-

(1)   Do you have the available bandwidth to develop, implement, and follow-up successfully?  In other words, do you have available resources and expertise?

(2)   Do you (or members of your organization) have the necessary skill set?  It takes tremendous passion and enthusiasm, combined with excellent presentation skills to capture workers’ attention in a manner necessary to achieve sustainable results.

At PPI, one of our primary roles is helping organizations achieve and sustain Next-Level Human Performance™.  Over the past eight years, we have assembled the finest team of human error reduction professionals on the planet.

Our Directors and Master Facilitators are experts at understanding the nature of specific cultural and human performance challenges, and in crafting and delivering implementation in a way that captures the workforce and delivers desired outcomes.

This being said, we actively promote a partnered approach of implementation, where we help you develop internal bench strength.  We do this through our PPC Certification Program.

  • Level I PPC Certification is designed to expand understanding of the psychology and methodology underlying the Practicing Perfection® approach.  This level of Certification is designed for key leaders and influencers within your organization.
  • Level II PPC Certification is designed for those who want to teach/facilitate the Practicing Perfection® approach.  Upon acquiring Level II PPC Certification and completing qualification, internal instructors become licensed to facilitate Mastery andHU Basic Training courses within your organization.

For more information about the PPC Certification process,click here.

If you would like one of our Directors to contact you so that you can gather more information about how Practicing Perfection® might be best implemented within your organization, please contact us.

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