05 December 2021

Managing Operational Risks: On the Wall at 100 Ft...

After days taking in the magnificent sights at 100+ feet below the surface off Grand Cayman Island, we were reminded how Operational Risk Management is prevalent in even remote places like this.

Take for example the mandate for using dive computers, as a guest of Wall to Wall Diving. For those not initiated with Scuba Diving, you might not realize that "sensors" are utilized in measuring potential threats to your life from something called "The Bends", or decompression sickness.

Giles Charlton-Jones and his wife Deanna from Wall to Wall Diving use a combination of proven Operational Risk Management processes and tools to reduce the risks to their clients. They do this because their small business is no different than that of a Fortune 500 company. As the owners and primary shareholders of any organization, it is the law in most cases to provide Duty of Care.

Decompression sickness, (DCS), diver's disease, the bends, or caisson disease is the name given to a variety of symptoms suffered by a person exposed to a reduction in the pressure surrounding their body. It is a type of diving hazard.

Dive computers perform a continuous calculation of the partial pressure of gases in the body based on the actual dive profile. As the dive computer automatically measures depth and time, it reduces the need for the diver to carry a separate watch and depth gauge and is able to warn of excessive ascent rates and missed decompression stops.

Many dive computers also provide additional information to the diver, for example, the water temperature, or the pressure of the remaining breathing gas in the diving cylinder.

The key point is, that these sensors attached to each diver, help Deter and Detect potential threats associated with decompression sickness. This even includes a calculation when it is safe again to fly on an airplane.

Like other manufacturers in the high technology systems sector, SCUBA (Self-contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) has it's own champions of companies who focus on the latest tools and solutions to help you manage risks. Who plan for future threat scenarios based upon collected intelligence over years of experience.

Suunto is just one example of a Finnish company, who have been developing instruments for measurement and sensors for various outdoor pursuits. Whether it be on the mountain at 20,000 ft. or underwater at 125 ft..

Weather and our Earths environment will always play a part in the daily risks mountaineers and divers face and who are proactive with the use of the correct tools, so they can operate in a more safe and secure manner.

Yet without the investment with “True Professionals” who have years of the relevant training, decades of experience and brilliant intuition, all the best tools will never be quite enough.

“How often do you encounter situations where the new threat intelligence collected and the automatic warning alerts have not been enough, to keep you out of harms way?”

As a global Fortune 500 company, the Board of Directors represents the interests of shareholders, as oversight owners of the company, in optimizing value by overseeing management performance on the shareholders' behalf.

The Board of Directors responsibilities in performing this oversight function include a Duty of Care and a Duty of Loyalty.

A Director's Duty of Care, refers to the responsibility to exercise appropriate due diligence in overseeing the management of the company, while continuously making OPS Risk decisions and performing other vital mitigation actions.

It remains refreshing to witness that even on a small island in the British West Indies, that the owners/operators are true professionals who are applying the practice of “Operational Risk Management” (ORM) in their own small employee-owned business.

First, they utilize it each day because they are Professionals. Second, they do it instinctively, because they know that it can mean the difference between life and death or predictive harm in an organizations daily operations.

As we near the end of another year of growing risks in 2021, we say congratulations to all of you who have found the science of “Operational Risk Management”.

Thank you to all of you, who have applied your own professional services “Art”, to make our world, more safe and secure in 2022! Godspeed!

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