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What the client wanted

W2 Training – an international business training organization with a reputation for improving safety and business performance – approached Impromptu to assist with a new safety leadership programme for their client, global oilfield services company, Petrofac. Building on previous years’ programmes, Petrofac wanted a new approach to learning that would enable OIMs, Production Managers, Supervisors and Safety Reps to:

  • Explore safety leadership and intervention opportunities
  • Build on the foundation knowledge of Human Factors to understand more about the drivers and Activators of Behaviours and how to influence them through Consequences
  • Use our knowledge to tackle practically the foundations of incidents
  • Build skills and techniques in having challenging intervention conversations through experience and practice with professional role players.

What we did

Impromptu and W2 designed a two-day immersion experiential workshop branded Sliding Doors. Drawing on the theme of the film "Sliding Doors", which dramatises the two potential consequences to the main character’s life depending on whether she catches or misses a train, the programme demonstrates powerfully how momentary decisions can have significant impact on later outcomes.

We researched a real life rail accident and drew upon the findings of the Rail Accident Investigation to dramatise the key 'sliding doors' situations and decisions that were taken that led to a catastrophic train derailment incident, which resulted in one fatality and 88 people injured.
On the programme a series of scenes are recreated to show how the decisions, behaviours and attitudes lead to the tragedy; two very powerful final scenes show the effect on people the consequences to both the bereaved and the workers involved.

The delegates were fly on the wall observers to the scenes and analysed the drivers of behaviours and evaluated the risks and potential consequences within each scene, identifying "sliding door" moments, where an effective intervention could change the course of events. They were also invited to participate as rail workers in some scenes, which enabled them to experience the pressures of the evolving situation first-hand.

The clock is then turned back and the scenes are then re-run. Delegates intervene directly with the role players in character and have challenging safety intervention conversations followed by motivational and formative personal coaching and feedback.

The outcomes

The workshop provided a powerful learning experience and built on delegates’ knowledge of the impact of Human Factors, risk-based decision-making and the opportunity to practise safety intervention conversations, thereby building the participants' belief and confidence that they can influence "sliding door" moments of safety.

The programme has been an extremely successful model of effectively embedding experiential learning with personal coaching; it is a truly transforming experience for people.

As a result Exxon Mobil and Bibby Offshore have adopted the workshop and are now also benefiting from the Sliding Doors programme.

Within Petrofac senior leaders rated the half-day master class workshops 5 out of 6. Operational Managers and Supervisors rated their two-day workshop 5.6 out of 6.

" In 2012 we introduced the use of professional actors to role play scenarios and interact with the delegates in intervention situations. This set a new standard and very high expectations for the 2013 courses.

Through the use of experiential learning rather than just traditional classroom based training, our delegates have had far better learning experiences and have gained practical skills in active listening, intervention conversations and human factors."

Jade Johnson, HSE Manager

Delegate comments on Sliding Doors

“Outstanding – one of the best tools we can have to reduce workplace risks”

“Excellent idea – a definite ‘concentration’ grabber”

“First time I have been involved with role playing – this added more realism in my opinion”