Category: Pictures

TapRooT® Around the World: Teranga Gold Corporation Onsite Course

June 9th, 2017 by

Such a great course with Teranga Gold folks.

Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here.

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.


Are you using the latest TapRooT® Tools and do you have the latest TapRooT® Books?

June 6th, 2017 by

Over the past three years, we’ve been working hard to take everything we have learned about using TapRooT® in almost 30 years of experience and use that knowledge (and the feedback from thousands of users) to make TapRooT® even better.

So here is the question …

Do you have the latest TapRooT® Materials?

How can you tell? Look at the copyright dates in your books.

If you don’t have materials that are from 2016 or later, they aren’t the most up to date.

Where can you get the most recent materials?

First, if you have not yet attended a 5-Day TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Course, I’d recommend going. You will get:

Or, you can order all of these by CLICKING HERE.


I think you will find that we’ve made the TapRooT® System even easier to use PLUS made it even more effective.

We recently published two other new books:

The TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Leadership Lessons book helps management understand how to apply TapRooT® to achieve operational excellence, high quality, and outstanding safety performance.

The TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis for Audits and Proactive Performance Improvement book explains how to use the TapRooT® Tools proactively for audits and assessments.

To order the books, just click on the links above.

And watch for the releases of the other new books we have coming out. Shortly, you will see the new books on:

  • Interviewing and information collection
  • Implementing TapRooT®
  • Troubleshooting and finding the root causes of equipment problems

That’s a lot of new information.

We have plans for even more but you will here about that at the 2018 Global TapRooT® Summit that is being held in Knoxville, Tennessee, on February 26 – March 2. The Summit agenda will be posted shortly. (Watch for that announcement too!)

TapRooT® Around the World: Onsite course for Barrick Gold in Lima, Peru

June 6th, 2017 by

Great TapRooT® root cause analysis course for Barrick Gold Mining Company last week!

Time for Advanced Root Cause Analysis of Special Operations Sky Diving Deaths?

May 31st, 2017 by

Screen Shot 2017 05 31 at 1 20 19 PM

Click on the image above for a Navy Times article about the accident at a recent deadly demonstration jump over the Hudson River.

Perhaps it’s time for a better root cause analysis of the problems causing these accidents?

TapRooT® Around the World: Nghi Son Refinery and Petrochemical plant in Thanh Hoa, Vietnam

May 30th, 2017 by

Great course at Nghi Son Refinery taught by TapRooT® instructor, Karl Berandt.

Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here.

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.

Is there an easier way to investigate simple problems?

May 24th, 2017 by

People often ask me:

“Is there an easier way to investigate simple problems?”

The answer is “YES!”

The simplest method is:


Of course, some methods may be too simple.

That’s why we wrote a book about the simplest, but reliable method to find the root causes of simple incidents. The title? Using the Essential TapRooT® Techniques to Investigate Low-to-Medium Risk Incidents.

Want to learn more? See an outline at:

Or just order a copy by CLICKING HERE.

TapRooT® Around the World: Doha, Qatar

May 19th, 2017 by

Great TapRooT® 5-Day Advanced Root Cause Analysis course at Oryx GTL last week!

Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here.

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.

TapRooT® Around the World: Bogota, Colombia

May 1st, 2017 by

Great course in Bogota last week! Here are some photos of course attendees building a SnapCharT®, a tool essential to a solid root cause investigation.




Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here.

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.

TapRooT® Around the World: Kyrgyzstan Course

April 25th, 2017 by

Great group from Kumtor Gold Mine in Kyrgyzstan last week!

Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here.

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.

TapRooT® in Krakow

April 19th, 2017 by

Here are some recent photos from our class in Krakow, Poland.

Are you attending the ASQ World Conference on Quality in Charlotte?

April 19th, 2017 by

If you are attending the conference, please stop by the TapRooT® Booth (#213) and say hello. Chris Vallee, Per Ohstrom, and I will be there.

The first 500 visitors will receive a special gift, the world’s fastest root cause analysis tool!

Bring a business card and enter the drawing for cool TapRooT® stuff during the Tuesday exhibit hall extravaganza.

Want to see the new TapRooT® VI 6.2.0 software? Come by on Tuesday from 09:00-1:30 and we’ll be happy to walk through a quality example for you.

See you then!

TapRooT® Around the World: Silao, Mexico

April 18th, 2017 by

Another great TapRooT® root cause analysis course in Mexico. Looks like a great class!

Interested in bringing TapRooT® to your company for training? Inquire here. 

Interested in sending your team to a TapRooT® course? Check our course schedule here.

TapRooT® Around the World: Bogota, Colombia

March 28th, 2017 by

Another great TapRooT® root cause analysis course in Bogota a couple of weeks ago!


TapRooT® Training in Dallas

March 13th, 2017 by

Another successful TapRooT® training course in the books! IMG_1077


The Joint Commission Issues Sentinel Event Alert #57

March 6th, 2017 by

Here’s a link to the announcement:

Here are the 11 tenants they suggest:


To broaden their thoughts, perhaps they should read about Admiral Rickover’s ideas about his nuclear safety culture. Start at this link:

And then healthcare executives could also insist on advanced root cause analysis.

Do you believe that ignorance is bliss?

March 6th, 2017 by

Ignorance is Bliss

From many people’s actions, you might believe that they think “ignorance is bliss” is true. We need to ignore the real root causes of problems and just attack the symptoms.

Screen Shot 2017 03 02 at 11 53 09 AM

Even the cartoon, Calvin and Hobbs, commented on it. See the cartoon on my Facebook page …

Is this the way you treat your root cause analysis?

Would you rather have a simple BUT WRONG answer?

For over a decade, I’ve explained the shortcomings of 5-Whys for root cause analysis but some still believe that easy is better than right.

What if you could find and fix the real root causes of what you think are “simple incidents” with a robust, advanced system (TapRooT®) and not make a career of the investigation? You would put in only the effort required. Your investigation would be as simple as possible without going overboard. And your corrective actions would be effective and stop repeat incidents.

That’s what the new book, Using the Essential TapRooT® Techniques to Investigate Low-to-Medium Risk Incidents, is all about.

Have you read the new book yet?

Once you read the book you will want to start implementing TapRooT® for all the “simple” investigations that are worth being done.

Get the book today and find out what you should be doing. Order the book at:

Happy Retirement LJ and Nicki!

February 28th, 2017 by

Today we had a bittersweet celebration for our Admin Team All-Stars, Nicki and LJ! They have dedicated many years to System Improvements (TapRooT®), and we will miss them greatly. If either of them have ever helped you with anything from general inquiries to product sales, you know what wonderful team members they are. Thank you for everything, Nicki and LJ. We wish you all the best!



Top 3 Reasons for Bad Root Cause Analysis and How You Can Overcome Them…

February 7th, 2017 by


I’ve heard many high level managers complain that they see the same problems happen over and over again. They just can’t get people to find and fix the problems’ root causes. Why does this happen and what can management do to overcome these issues? Read on to find out.



Blame is the number one reason for bad root cause analysis.


Because people who are worried about blame don’t fully cooperate with an investigation. They don’t admit their involvement. They hold back critical information. Often this leads to mystery accidents. No one knows who was involved, what happened, or why it happened.

As Bart Simpson says:

“I didn’t do it.”
“Nobody saw me do it.”
“You can’t prove anything.”

Blame is so common that people take it for granted.

Somebody makes a mistake and what do we do? Discipline them.

If they are a contractor, we fire them. No questions asked.

And if the mistake was made by senior management? Sorry … that’s not how blame works. Blame always flows downhill. At a certain senior level management becomes blessed. Only truly horrific accidents like the Deepwater Horizon or Bhopal get senior managers fired or jailed. Then again, maybe those accidents aren’t bad enough for discipline for senior management.

Think about the biggest economic collapse in recent history – the housing collapse of 2008. What senior banker went to jail?

But be an operator and make a simple mistake like pushing the wrong button or a mechanic who doesn’t lock out a breaker while working on equipment? You may be fired or have the feds come after you to put you in jail.

Talk to Kurt Mix. He was a BP engineer who deleted a few text messages from his personal cell phone AFTER he had turned it over to the feds. He was the only person off the Deepwater Horizon who faced criminal charges. Or ask the two BP company men who represented BP on the Deepwater Horizon and faced years of criminal prosecution. 

How do you stop blame and get people to cooperate with investigations? Here are two best practices.

A. Start Small …

If you are investigating near-misses that could have become major accidents and you don’t discipline people who spill the beans, people will learn to cooperate. This is especially true if you reward people for participating and develop effective fixes that make the work easier and their jobs less hazardous. 

Small accidents just don’t have the same cloud of blame hanging over them so if you start small, you have a better chance of getting people to cooperate even if a blame culture has already been established.

B. Use a SnapCharT® to facilitate your investigation and report to management.

We’ve learned that using a SnapCharT® to facilitate an investigation and to show the results to management reduces the tendency to look for blame. The SnapCharT® focuses on what happened and “who did it” becomes less important.

Often, the SnapCharT® shows that there were several things that could have prevented the accident and that no one person was strictly to blame. 

What is a SnapCharT®? Attend any TapRooT® Training and you will learn how to use them. See:

TapRooT® Training



Ever see someone use 5-Whys to find root causes? They start with what they think is the problem and then ask “Why?” five times. Unfortunately this easy methods often leads investigators astray.


Because they should have started by asking what before they asked why.

Many investigators start asking why before they understand what happened. This causes them to jump to conclusions. They don’t gather critical evidence that may lead them to the real root causes of the problem. And they tend to focus on a single Causal Factor and miss several others that also contributed to the problem. 

How do you get people to ask what instead of why?

Once again, the SnapCharT® is the best tool to get investigators focused on what happened, find the incidents details, identify all the Causal Factors and the information about each Causal Factor that the investigator needs to identify each problem’s root causes.



Many investigators start their investigation with a pretty good idea of the root causes they are looking for. They already know the answers. All they have to do is find the evidence that supports their hypothesis.

What happens when an investigator starts an investigation by jumping to conclusions?

They ignore evidence that is counter to their hypothesis. This problem is called a:

Confirmation Bias

It has been proven in many scientific studies.

But there is an even bigger problem for investigators who think they know the answer. They often don’t have the training in human factors and equipment reliability to recognize the real root causes of each of the Causal Factors. Therefore, they only look for the root causes they know about and don’t get beyond their current knowledge.

What can you do to help investigators look beyond their current knowledge and avoid confirmation bias?

Have them use the SnapCharT® and the TapRooT® Root Cause Tree® Diagram when finding root causes. You will be amazed at the root causes your investigators discover that they previously would have overlooked.

How can your investigators learn to use the Root Cause Tree® Diagram? Once again, send them to TapRooT® Training.


The TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis System can help your investigators overcome the top 3 reasons for bad root cause analysis. And that’s not all. There are many other advantages for management and investigators (and employees) when people use TapRooT® to solve problems.

If you haven’t tried TapRooT® to solve problems, you don’t know what you are missing.

If your organization faces:

  • Quality Issues
  • Safety Incidents
  • Repeat Equipment Failures
  • Sentinel Events
  • Environmental Incidents
  • Cost Overruns
  • Missed Schedules
  • Plant Downtime

You need to be apply the best root cause analysis system: TapRooT®.

Learn more at:

And find the dates and locations for our public TapRooT® Training at:


Connect with Us

Filter News

Search News


Angie ComerAngie Comer


Anne RobertsAnne Roberts


Barb CarrBarb Carr

Editorial Director

Chris ValleeChris Vallee

Human Factors

Dan VerlindeDan Verlinde

VP, Software

Dave JanneyDave Janney

Safety & Quality

Garrett BoydGarrett Boyd

Technical Support

Ken ReedKen Reed

VP, Equifactor®

Linda UngerLinda Unger


Mark ParadiesMark Paradies

Creator of TapRooT®

Per OhstromPer Ohstrom

VP, Sales

Shaun BakerShaun Baker

Technical Support

Steve RaycraftSteve Raycraft

Technical Support

Wayne BrownWayne Brown

Technical Support

Success Stories

In March of 1994, two of our investigators were sent to the TapRooT 5-day Incident Investigator Team…

Fluor Fernald, Inc.

Our ongoing, sustained effort is to make jobs safer and to reduce (and eventually…

Otis Elevator, Russia
Contact Us