Advertisement

Fast, Slow, and Pause: Understanding Error Management via a Temporal Lens

  • Zhike Lei
Chapter

Abstract

Managing errors in real time requires errors to be reported in a timely manner. Yet silence, or covering errors up, is a more natural tendency for organizational employees. The author uses a temporal lens to shed light on why and how errors are or are not reported. She suggests we begin to think not just about whether or not errors are reported, but also about how fast (or slowly) errors are reported, and when and why error reporting starts and stops. By focusing on timing, pace, and rhythms issues of error reporting and cultural differences in these issues, Lei highlights a possible error paradox. That is, although rapid actions and responses are needed in the heat of the moment, people need to pause, reflect, and explore in order to successfully report on and cope with errors. As Lei demonstrates, fast action or reporting should not necessarily be discouraged, but we should be alerted to the side effects of emphasizing speed over analysis.

References

  1. Ancona, D.G., P.S. Goodman, B.S. Lawrence, and M.L. Tushman. 2001a. Time: A new research lens. Academy of Management Review 26 (4): 645–663.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ancona, D.G., G.A. Okhuysen, and L.A. Perlow. 2001b. Taking time to integrate temporal research. Academy of Management Review 26 (4): 512–529.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Buckley, C. 2017. 2 PwC accountants in Oscars mix-up won’t be back, Academy says. New York Times. Google Scholar
  4. Bunkley, N. 2011. Recall study finds flaws at Toyota. New York Times, B1.Google Scholar
  5. Carroll, J.S. 1998. Organizational learning activities in high-hazard industries: The logics underlying self-analysis. Journal of Management Studies 35: 699–717.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cooper, J. 2007. Cognitive dissonance: 50 years of a classic theory. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  7. Cronin, M.A., L.R. Weingart, and G. Todorova. 2011. Dynamics in groups: Are we there yet? The Academy of Management Annals 5: 571–612.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Croskerry, P. 2013. From mindless to mindful practice – Cognitive bias and clinical decision making. New England Journal of Medicine 368 (26): 2445–2448.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Edmondson, A.C. 1999. Psychological safety and learning behavior in work teams. Administrative Science Quarterly 44 (2): 350–383.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. ———. 2011. Strategies for learning from failure. Harvard Business Review 89 (4): 48–55.Google Scholar
  11. Edmondson, A.C., and Z. Lei. 2014. Psychological safety: The history, renaissance, and future of an interpersonal construct. Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior 1: 23–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Edmondson, A.C., M.A. Roberto, R.M. Bohmer, E.M. Ferlins, and L.R. Feldman. 2005. The recovery window: Organizational learning following ambiguous threats. In Organization at the limit: Lessons from the Columbia disaster, ed. M. Farjoun and W. Starbuck, 220–245. Malden: Blackwell Publishing.Google Scholar
  13. Feldman, M.S., and B.T. Pentland. 2003. Reconceptualizing organizational routines as a source of flexibility and change. Administrative Science Quarterly 48 (1): 94–118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Frese, M., and N. Keith. 2015. Action errors, error management, and learning in organizations. Annual Review of Psychology 66: 661–687.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Funabashi, Y., and K. Kitazawa. 2012. Fukushima in review: A complex disaster, a disastrous response. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist 68 (2): 9–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Gelfand, M.J., L.H. Nishii, and J.L. Raver. 2006. On the nature and importance of cultural tightness-looseness. Journal of Applied Psychology 91 (6): 1225.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Gelfand, M.J., M. Frese, and E. Salmon. 2011a. Cultural influences on error prevention, detection, and management. In Errors in organizations, ed. D.A. Hofmann and M. Frese, 273–315. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  18. Gelfand, M.J., et al. 2011b. Differences between tight and loose cultures: A 33-nation study. Science 332 (6033): 1100–1104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gersick, C.J. 1988. Time and transition in work teams: Toward a new model of group development. Academy of Management Journal 31 (1): 9–41.Google Scholar
  20. Gibson, C.B., and J. Birkinshaw. 2004. The antecedents, consequences, and mediating role of organizational ambidexterity. Academy of Management Journal 47 (2): 209–226.Google Scholar
  21. Goodman, P.S., R. Ramanujam, J.S. Carroll, A.C. Edmondson, D.A. Hofmann, and K.M. Sutcliffe. 2011. Organizational errors: Directions for future research. Research in Organizational Behavior 31: 151–176.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Groopman, J. 2007. What’s the trouble? The New Yorker.Google Scholar
  23. Haberman, C. 2014. Challenger, Columbia and the nature of calamity. The New York Times, June 1.Google Scholar
  24. Hagen, J. 2013. Confronting mistakes: Lessons from the aviation industry when dealing with error. Houndmills/Basingstoke/Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  25. Hall, E. 1983. The dance of life. New York: Anchor Books/Doubleday.Google Scholar
  26. Hofmann, D.A., and M. Frese. 2011. Errors, error taxonomies, error prevention, and error management: Laying the groundwork for discussing errors in organizations. In Errors in organizations, ed. D.A. Hofmann and M. Frese, 1–44. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  27. Hofmann, D.A., and B.A. Mark. 2006. An investigation of the relationship between safety climate and medication errors as well as other nurse and patient outcomes. Personnel Psychology 59: 847–869.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hofstede, G. 1980. Motivation, leadership, and organization: Do American theories apply abroad? Organizational Dynamics 9 (1): 42–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. ———. 1991. Cultures and organizations. intercultural cooperation and its importance for survival. Software of the mind. London: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  30. Katz-Navon, T., E. Naveh, and Z. Stern. 2005. Safety climate in healthcare organizations: A multidimensional approach. Academy of Management Journal 48: 1075–1089.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Lei, Z., and N. Lehmann-Willenbrock. 2015. Affect in meetings: An interpersonal construct in dynamic interaction processes. In The Cambridge handbook of meeting science, ed. J.A. Allen, N. Lehmann-Willenbrock, and S.G. Rogelberg, 456–482. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Lei, Z., E. Naveh, and Z. Novikov. 2016a. Errors in organizations: An integrative review via level of analysis, temporal dynamism, and priority lenses. Journal of Management 42 (5): 1315–1343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Lei, Z., M.J. Waller, J. Hagen, and S. Kaplan. 2016b. Team adaptiveness in dynamic contexts: contextualizing the roles of interaction patterns and in-process planning. Group & Organization Management 41 (4): 491–525. https://doi.org/10.1177/1059601115615246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Levine, R.N. 1997. A geography of time: On tempo, culture, and the pace of life. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  35. Lovins, A. 2011. Soft energy paths for the 21st century. Snowmass: Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI). An abridged version of this article, without notes, was commissioned and published in Japanese by Gaiko (Diplomacy) 8: 65–73 (July 2011) as “Nijyuu-isseiki no Soft Energy Path” by Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.Google Scholar
  36. Merkin, R.S. 2006. Uncertainty avoidance and facework: A test of the Hofstede model. International Journal of Intercultural Relations 30 (2): 213–228.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Morrison, E.W., and F.J. Milliken. 2000. Organizational silence: A barrier to change and development in a pluralistic world. Academy of Management Review 25 (4): 706–725.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Mozur, P. 2017. Political crisis engulfs Samsung, a firm tied to South Korea’s success. New York Times.Google Scholar
  39. Naveh, E., and T. Katz-Navon. 2014. Antecedents of willingness to report medical treatment errors in health care organizations: A multilevel theoretical framework. Health Care Management Review 39: 21–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Nembhard, I.M., and A.C. Edmondson. 2006. Making it safe: The effects of lead inclusiveness and professional status on psychological safety and improvement efforts in health care teams. Journal of Organizational Behavior 27: 941–966.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. O’Reilly, C.A., 3rd, and M.L. Tushman. 2004. The ambidextrous organization. Harvard Business Review 82 (4): 74–81.Google Scholar
  42. Pelto, P.J. 1968. The differences between “Tight” and “Loose” societies. Society 5 (5): 37–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Perlow, L.A., G.A. Okhuysen, and N.P. Repenning. 2002. The speed trap: Exploring the relationship between decision making and temporal context. Academy of Management Journal 45 (5): 931–955.Google Scholar
  44. Perrow, C. 1984. Normal accidents. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  45. Ramanujam, R., and P.C. Goodman. 2003. Latent errors and adverse organizational consequences: A conceptualization. Journal of Organizational Behavior 24: 815–836.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Ramanujam, R., and P.S. Goodman. 2011. The link between organizational errors and adverse consequences: The role of error-correcting and error-amplifying feedback processes. In Errors in organizations, ed. D.A. Hofmann and M. Frese, 245–272. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  47. Reason, J. 1990. Human error. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Ring, D.C., J.H. Herndon, and G.S. Meyer. 2010. Case 34-2010: A 65-year-old woman with an incorrect operation on the left hand. New England Journal of Medicine 363 (20): 1950–1957.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Roberto, M.A. 2002. Lessons from Everest: The interaction of cognitive bias, psychological safety, and system complexity. California Management Review 45 (1): 136–158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Rudolph, J.W., and D.B. Raemer. 2004. Diagnostic problem-solving during simulated crises in the OR. Anesthesia and Analgesia 98 (5S): S34.Google Scholar
  51. Rudolph, J.W., and N.P. Repenning. 2002. Disaster dynamics: Understanding the role of quantity in organizational collapse. Administrative Science Quarterly 47: 1–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Rudolph, J.W., J.B. Morrison, and J.S. Carroll. 2009. The dynamics of action-oriented problem solving: linking interpretation and choice. Academy of Management Review 34: 733–756.Google Scholar
  53. Schmutz, J.B., Z. Lei, W. Eppich, and T. Manser. 2017. Reflection in the heat of the moment: Temporal approach to team reflexivity in healthcare emergency teams. To be presented at the Interdisciplinary group research (INGroup) conference, St. Louis, MO.Google Scholar
  54. Schneeweiss, S. 2014. Learning from big health care data. New England Journal of Medicine 370 (23): 2161–2163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Schwartz, B. 2004. The paradox of choice: Why less is more. New York: HarperCollins.Google Scholar
  56. Singer, S.J., and T.J. Vogus. 2013. Reducing hospital errors: Interventions that build safety culture. Annual Review of Public Health 34: 373–396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Spear, S., and H.K. Bowen. 1999. Decoding the DNA of the Toyota production system. Harvard Business Review 77: 96–108.Google Scholar
  58. Thomke, S. 2012. Mumbai’s models of service excellence. Harvard Business Review 90 (11): 121–126.Google Scholar
  59. Tinsley, C.H., R.L. Dillon, and P.M. Madsen. 2011. How to avoid catastrophe. Harvard Business Review 89 (4): 90–97.Google Scholar
  60. Tucker, A.L., and A.C. Edmondson. 2003. Why hospitals don’t learn from failures: Organizational and psychological dynamics that inhibit system change. California Management Review 45: 55–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Vaughan, D. 1996. The Challenger launch decision. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  62. Waller, M.J., J.M. Conte, C.B. Gibson, and M.A. Carpenter. 2001. The effect of individual perceptions of deadlines on team performance. Academy of Management Review 26 (4): 586–600.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Waller, M.J., Z. Lei, and R. Pratten. 2014. Focusing on teams in crisis management education: An integration and simulation-based approach. Academy of Management Learning & Education 13: 208–221. https://doi.org/10.5465/amle.2012.0337.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Weick, K.E. 1993. The collapse of sensemaking in organizations: The Mann Gulch disaster. Administrative Science Quarterly 38: 628–652.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Weick, K.E., K.M. Sutcliffe, and D. Obstfeld. 1999. Organizing for high reliability: Processes of collective mindfulness. Research in Organizational Behavior 21: 81–123.Google Scholar
  66. Zerubavel, E. 1981. Hidden rhythms. Schedules and calendars in social life. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  67. Zhao, B., and F. Olivera. 2006. Error reporting in organizations. Academy of Management Review 31: 1012–1030.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhike Lei
    • 1
  1. 1.MalibuUSA

Personalised recommendations