Business Lessons from the Hillsborough Inquest
The strong feeling of disbelief has been with me from the moment I caught a glimpse of what I thought was a dramatic drama on a TV in the TV rental shop window (that shows how old I am now!) until the moment the inquest verdicts were delivered on 26th May 2016 - 27 years after the 1989 tragedy!
Whilst I, like many others, have strong views on what went on - as a HR Professional I would like to dwell on some of the key learning points for businesses such as:
- The need to have a fully documented & communicated disaster scenario which covers the different catastrophes that could happen to your business, who you need to get involved & the different roles each of those parties would play.
- A disaster recovery plan - everything you need to do to get your business back into operation after a catastrophe - including a section for lessons learnt!
- The importance of undertaking comprehensive & independent investigations - thankfully, for most businesses these will only relate to disciplinary & grievance proceeding - however, it never ceases to amaze me how shallow many investigations are & that it is often the line manager that becomes "Judge, Jury & Executioner" - as they raise the complaint about the employee, do a little investigation & then are the decision maker at the disciplinary hearing. How fair would that feel to you?
- Just because someone is in authority, more senior or mature does not mean that they will always tell the truth. Everyone can have a different version of the truth based on the lens that they are looking through - human being have biases that are based on numerous factors. The more detailed or in-depth your investigation is the more chance you have of getting to the real truth.
- Create a culture where people who make a mistake are not afraid to own up to that mistake so that the situtation can be quickly sorted & everyone can learn from the situation.
- Ensure that you have a Whistleblowing Policy so that people have a safe process to highlight any genuine concerns about how their colleagues or the business are conducting themselves
I am sure there are many other learning points; however, as I sit on a rather cold boat in the Norfolk Broads they are the ones that come to mind.
If you have any other learning points I would love to hear from you.