Category: Uncategorized

Weekly Wisdom: Take control of your future

February 17th, 2015 by

create future

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Abraham Lincoln

TapRooT® Around the World: Dublin, Ireland

January 15th, 2015 by


Ever wanted to take a trip to Ireland? TapRooT® will be holding a 2-Day Incident Investigation and Root Cause Analysis public course in Dublin on February 9-10. The scenery and pubs that Ireland is known for are not the only things that hold them apart from everyone else. Dublin was listed as a highly rated global city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network making it one of the top thirty cities in the world. However it’s modern city growth can never take away the rich history that surrounds the country. Each of the brick streets, castles and stone bridges date back hundreds of years making Dublin quite the well-rounded city. You won’t want to miss this opportunity to travel to Ireland and learn Root Cause Analysis.


Sabor Brazil: A fancier, gourmet style dinner with a taste of Brazil got this restaurant the Tourists Choice Award.

Bad Bobs: Perfect for a night out to eat a relaxing, delicious meal at an official Irish Pub.

The Lotts: Bar quizzes, fun entertainment and award winning food are the best combination for a great time in Dublin.


Irish Whiskey Museum: If you’re in Ireland,  you have to learn about the history behind their whiskey and how it became apart of the culture.

Traditional Irish Experience: Let a tour guide take you around to experience the local way of life and see if you’ve got what it takes to be Irish.

Extreme Ireland: This is the single best way to see all the major historical buildings, castles and landmarks along with a knowledgeable tour guide.


Register for the course HERE.

Save the Date for our annual Global TapRooT® Summit coming up in June! Information and Registration here.

TapRooT® Around the World: Monterrey, Mexico

January 14th, 2015 by

Thank you to Jesus Alonso for taking great pictures for us to share. These are from a recent TapRooT® Course in Monterrey, Mexico.





Want more information regarding our TapRooT® Public and Onsite Courses? Click Here. 

Interested in joining us at our annual Global TapRooT® Summit in June 2015? Click here for more information. 

TapRooT® Around the World: Aberdeen, Scotland

December 11th, 2014 by


Have you ever visited Aberdeen, Scotland? Join TapRooT® for a 5-Day Advanced Root Cause Analysis and Team Leader Training Course on January 26-30, 2015. Aberdeen is known for many things in the northeast such as their busy heliports, oil industry, education and seaport. It was also recognized to be a leading business hub and a “super-city” by the HSBC. Along with their outstanding economy, Aberdeen has beautiful Victorian Era architecture. You won’t regret visiting this wonderful city!


Mamma Mia: This quaint Italian restaurant serves a little bit of everything with delicious coffee and desserts.

Bite Me: Freshly made, gourmet dishes in a small cafe in Scotland. Give it a try!

Sand Dollar Cafe: A seaside bistro that serves some of the best seafood around.


The Gordon Highlanders Museum: This highly reviews history museum is a tourist and local hit. Learn some interesting Scottish and World history.

Aberdeen Maritime Museum: Interested in boats and sailing the seas? Enjoy a visit to this historical and informational museum.

Craigievar Castle: Take a step back in time and visit a real life castle.

REGISTER HERE for this Aberdeen course.

Click here for more information on other international TapRooT® courses.

Another successful TapRooT® course in Dubai!

December 11th, 2014 by

Today marks the end of yet another great course in Dubai. Here are some pictures of the students and the final team exercise presentations:







Our next set of courses in the Middle East will be in March; a 2 day in Dubai or a 5 day in Doha. To join one of these courses, register HERE

TapRooT® Around the World: Barcelona, Venezuela

December 10th, 2014 by

Thanks to Jesus Alonso for taking such great photos of a TapRooT® Onsite Course.






Interested in more information on our TapRooT® Public and Onsite Courses? Click Here

Don’t forget that our annual Global TapRooT® Summit is coming up in June 2015. Click Here for more information.


How to Contact Your TapRooT® Staff – LinkedIn

December 5th, 2014 by

The staff at System Improvements really enjoys working with our customers. One great way to keep in touch with our staff is to connect with them on LinkedIn. You can see what they’re up to, where they are, and read about the great ideas they have for you. It’s also an easy way to contact them if you need assistance or answers to any questions.

We invite you to connect with us! Here’s a list of some of our staff and their LinkedIn contact link:

Mark Paradies (President):
Linda Unger (Vice President):
Ed Skompski (Vice President):
Ken Reed (Partner):
Chris Vallee (Senior Associate):
Dave Janney (Senior Associate):
Becky Marambio (Sales Associate):
Benna Dortch (Sales Associate):
Michelle Wishoun (Licensing Associate):
Barbara Phillips (Editorial Director):
Steve Raycraft (Tech Support):
Cherie Larson (Accounting Director):
Judy Potok (Public Course Planner):
Natalie Tabler (On-site Course Planner):

TapRooT® Around the World: Dubai OnSite Course Photos

December 3rd, 2014 by

Thank you to Mhorvan Sherret for sending us some great photos from a recent TapRooT® OnSite Course in Dubai, UAE.

image image-1 image-2 image-2


For more information regarding public or onsite TapRooT® courses, click here. 

Summit Attendees Share Favorite Aspects of the 2014 Global TapRooT® Summit

November 28th, 2014 by

Ron Zanoni joined us at the 2014 Global TapRooT® Summit in Horseshoe Bay, Texas and shared with us some of his favorite aspects. Tune in to listen to one of the many reasons you should join us in June 2015 in Las Vegas for the upcoming Global TapRooT® Summit.

Don’t have time to listen? Read the dialogue below!

How do you like the Summit so far?

“I think the Summit is one of the better summits that I have attended with the exception of maybe one of the Las Vegas ones, but it’s very good!”

What are some of the best practices that you’ll be taking back with you? 

“One of the best practices that I picked up was doing good risk assessments using risk ranking and I intend to try and employ that in my incident investigations.”

Thanks for coming! We’re glad you’r here!

Interested in more information about the Summit? Click here

Ready to register? Registration will be available on Monday, December 1! 

TapRooT® Summit Attendees Share Favorite Aspects of the Summit

November 21st, 2014 by

Tune in to this week’s Global TapRooT® Summit’s testimonial. Listen to how attendee, Mujeeb Rahman, plans to use the knowledge he took away from the Summit back at his workplace.

Don’t have time to watch the video? Read the dialogue below.

Mujeeb, what do you like about our Summit this year?

“It was wonderful. Just to experience different individuals, the sharing of new techniques, it was really helpful. I, myself, attended the Pre Summit breakout course and it was really really helpful. Especially some of the techniques that I wish I had before. Had I known about it, I could have saved so much time, costs, on time delivery that I can use, actually, in the quality of the supply chain side would bring a lot of benefit to my company.”

Great, well we’re so glad you came this year and we look forward to seeing you next year.

Want more information regarding the 2015 TapRooT® Summit? Click Here

Ready to register for the 2015 TapRooT® Summit? Registration opens December 1, 2014!

TapRooT® Around the World: London, England

November 13th, 2014 by


Join the TapRooT® team on December 8, 2014 for a 5-Day Advance Root Cause Analysis Team Leader Training public course in London, England!

London has grown to the top of the list in leading global cities with strengths in education, entertainment, finance, healthcare, professional services, research and development, and, of course, tourism. After reviewing their international arrivals last year, London is also the world’s most visited city. There is no doubt that their historical heritage is what so many tourists long to see and experience.


The Five Fields: Interested in trying new fresh gourmet flavors? The Five Fields has a multitude of options.

The Andover Arms: A local pub with a fun atmosphere and delicious London favorites.

The Art of Pizza:  If you love pizza, this is a must try! The Art of Pizza home-makes all dough and sauce to create the best pizza around.


Houses of Parliament Tour:  Visit, in person, the UK Parliament buildings you’ve only seen in movies and textbooks.

The National Gallery:  Appreciate the Arts with exhibits containing pieces by Rembrandt and Monet.

Hippodrome Casino: Enjoy a night out on the town at London’s Casino of the year.


To register: click here

For more information regarding our many international public courses: click here.

For information regarding our upcoming Global TapRooT® Summit: click here.


TapRooT® Around the World: Cape Town, South Africa

October 30th, 2014 by



Among the many reasons to visit Cape Town, South Africa, a TapRooT® Course is one of the best. Join us on December 4, 2014 for a 2-Day TapRooT® Incident Investigation and Root Cause Analysis Public Course and gain the knowledge and ability to help improve your business. According to the New York Times this past year, Cape Town is the best place in the world to visit. The world famous harbour and natural setting in the Cape floral kingdom bring tourists from all over the world to admire its beauty. You’ll fall in love with this city.


The Test Kitchen: Looking for something a little different? The Test Kitchen offers a warm atmosphere with genuine flavours prepared by their world-famous chef.

Miller’s Thumb:  This fun, colorful restaurant is sure to show you a good time and feed you delicious, fresh fish.

Myoga: Relaxation can be a key factor when choosing where to eat dinner. Myoga strives to entertain you with their open kitchen and earthy ambience to bring complete relaxation with your meal.


Table Mountain National Park: Cape Town being on the beautiful harbour, opens up their incredible natural attraction to the public for a fun, unique experience.

The Old Biscuit Mill: Located in the heart of Woodstock, The Old Biscuit Mill brings in local artists to show their passions to the public in an intriguing environment.

Two Oceans Aquarium: Bringing the family with you the Cape Town? Spend the day at Two Oceans Aquarium for an exciting, interactive, educational day.

Click here to register.


2014 Global TapRooT® Summit Attendees Share Favorite Aspects from the Summit

October 3rd, 2014 by

Jeff Caudill from Marathon Oil Company attended our 2014 Global TapRooT® Summitt in Horseshoe Bay, Texas this past April. Watch his video below to learn what his favorite aspects of the Summit were and how he plans to improve his company through implementing TapRooT®.

How have you liked the Summit?

“Very good, very imformative, really had a good time.”

What was your favorite session?

“I had a number of favorite sessions. Most sessions I went to I would sit and listen and take some nuggets from it and I would sit there and think, ‘Well how could I use this when I get back?’ So, I was doing a continuous improvement while I was in the class. So, I didn’t really need to do a wrap up at the end because I’ve already made a lot of notes. There are a number of different safety initiatives and a couple different ways that I am going to start implementing, like trending a little bit more effectively, looking at more leading indicators for tracking our successes and try to promote some cultural change ideas for the company on the way we do some of our measuring and metrics.”

Did you attend the reception and enjoy it?

“Yes, Carl Dixon was great. I got to talk to him. He had a great, amazing story to tell and I hope he continues to do that and is very successful. Getting around to talk to people you haven’t seen because this was my first summit, but I have a number of colleagues that I work with that were here as well as some other folks from other industries that I have known prior to coming. The most exciting thing about being here was that I met Rocky Bleier in the hallway and I’m a lifelong Pittsburgh Steelers fan so we had a short conversation but I tried not to bother him too much. But I really appreciate you guys bringing him here. “


For more information regarding our upcoming Global TapRooT® Summit June 1-5 in Las Vegas, NV, Click Here.

2014 Global TapRooT® Summit Attendees Share Favorite Aspects of The Summit

September 29th, 2014 by

A group from Strad Energy share their favorite aspects of the 2014 Global TapRooT® Summit. Watch their video below to learn how they are planning to implement best practices they learned at the Summit into their workplaces and how they plan to share corrective actions among each other as they move back to their respective branches of Strad Energy all across northern United States and Canada:

If you’re having trouble hearing the video, here is some dialogue:

How did you all like the Summit?

“The summit was a great opportunity for the team to build on their skills, remind us of some of the skills we forgot, provide an opportunity for all of us to get on the same page and move the TapRooT® program events forward.”

What were some of your favorite sessions?

“One of the sessions that I attended was with a really good speaker. He brought a lot of information, not just about how we do our job, but how we do our jobs more effectively and how we take that home to our families and how to better each one of us as a whole. It was very good.”

What was one of your favorite best practices that youre going to bring back to work with you?

“We, as a team, are going to share all of our TapRooT® Investigations with each other. We’re all from different regions all over Canada, Pennyslvania and North Dakota. By getting incidents, sharing it across the board, we’re going to be able to bounce ideas off of each other and find out, well “I’ve had this happen before and this is what we did” and our corrective actions are going to get a lot better because of it.”

Tell me a little bit about the reception.

“The reception was great. It was a great opportunity to get out, network, meet other companies, hang out with each other, watch some good music and really just relax at the end of the day. It was nice.”

Tell me a little bit more about this week’s team building exercise.

“This was a great opportunity since our team is spread across many different regions. It’s the first opportunity we’ve had to get the full team together. We had some exercises with some questionairres assigned and some fun assignments were assigned to group members throughout the week. It really brought us closer as a team. We had the opportunity to share some laughs and attend a lot of good sessions.”


Want to learn more about our 2015 TapRooT® Summit in Las Vegas? Click Here

What does a bad day look like?

September 4th, 2014 by

Here are some pictures sent to me by Jim Whiting, one of our Australian TapRooT® Instructors…
















5-Day TapRooT® Advanced Root Cause Analysis Team Leader Training in Dallas, TX

August 19th, 2013 by

Jonathan Ellgass and I are teaching the 5 day course here in Dallas this week. Here are some pictures of the day one activities:






Why not join us for the next course? You can see the schedule and register HERE

5-Day TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Course: A New Orleans Birthday!

April 29th, 2013 by

From Chris Vallee:

Another Great 5-Day TapRooT® Course in New Orleans

Great Students, Great Hotel Staff and a Great Co-Worker, Dennis Osmer, to teach with…. what else could you ask for on my birthday!



Weekly Wisdom for Root Cause Analysis

November 13th, 2012 by

“Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped.” ~ African Proverb

2-Day TapRooT® Incident Investigation and Root Cause Analysis in San Antonio

August 8th, 2012 by

Bob Koonce and I are in San Antonio this week teaching our two day course.  Here are some pictures of Bob teaching and the students working on their group exercises:

If you missed us on this one, join us for another course soon.  This course filled up several weeks in advance so we apologize for not being able to accommodate everyone.  Many of our courses this summer have filled up very early, so if you plan to attend a course, you should register as soon as possible.  You can see the course schedule HERE.


TapRooT® in Trinidad: One week, Two Companies

May 15th, 2012 by

Learning how to perform an Audit... it is not just about compliance!

Covering Step 2 of the 7-Step TapRooT® Process

Often when teaching Onsite TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Courses, we get to teach two different companies in back to back courses. Doing this actually saves our clients on instructor airplane travel costs. Last week in Trinidad, I had the opportunity to work with IPSL (pictured above) and Tucker Energy (pictured below).

Learning about the SnapCharT®

Working on the Root Cause Analysis

Working on final excercise

Working on Root Cause Analysis

Just some of the Testimonials after the final exercise:

“Very engaging, eye opening! Be neutral!”   (bias kills an investigation every time the students learn)

“Today’s session was detailed and gave a clear idea on how to investigate an incident totally and fair.”

“The course highlighted that we used the wrong approach for incident investigations in the past.”  (They found conflicting evidence that had not been verified yet)

“Very good hands on approach; assistance from the facilitators (instructors) was very helpful throughout the course.”




Weekly Wisdom for Quality

February 21st, 2012 by

It is easier to do a job right than to explain why you didn’t. ~ Martin Van Buren

Great Human Factors: When a Hand Control is Called a "Suicide Shifter"

February 16th, 2012 by


I am a sucker for a 1948 Indian Chief motorcycle.  So I  thought … what a great opportunity to talk about Human Factors Design and show off a little nostalgia. The topic of today is the Suicide Shifter.

The Suicide Shifter is located on the left side of the fuel tank and was used to shift gears while riding. Called a Suicide Shifter because you had to take your left hand off the handle bar grip to shift it.

So the question for you today is how many equipment control designs used today at your work area are not placed in the safest area to use while operating?

Great Human Factors: The New Windows 8

February 9th, 2012 by

In the human factors world there is an acronym, HCI. This stands for Human Computer Interaction. A subset of the human factors field, HCI is where computer software programers meet the computer user’s needs by design BEFORE they sell it. So…… have you seen the marketing and pre-beta download for Windows 8?

  • Will the new version frustrate new or experienced window users? or both?
  • Will Microsoft help experienced users transition?
  • How will Microsoft help experience users transition (if they do) to the new version?
  • Will software developers who have software used on Microsoft help transition their existing customers?

Windows 8 Developer Preview is available for you to try now:

Great Human Factors: Can Intuitive Tool Design Override Previous Training?

February 2nd, 2012 by

Watch the chimpanzee vs. human child in a learning experiment.

Here is the video link:

We are all trained, or learn, by trial and error on how to use equipment or how to use it “properly”. What happens when you get a better “understanding” of how the equipment works? Here are some of the choices that we could make:

1. Ignore the previous training and just get the prize (work done faster, like the chimpanzee)

2. Continue the rules that you learned or were trained to do (at least in front of the bosses like the children).

3. Stop and ask what’s up?

4. Stop using the tool all together and do not tell anyone.

Often the previous training and experience overrides the new operation steps needed … ever been totally frustrated every time someone changes your computer’s Microsoft Windows version? And no, training by itself does not override experience, practice and repetition does!

I had a discussion not too long ago that OSHA forklift training requirements were met when people were retrained after changing forklifts. Unfortunately, the controls worked exactly opposite on the new forklift and the quick review did nothing to override the past knowledge and muscle motor memory.

Just something to think about when you think “Great Human Factors.”

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®

Michelle WishounMichelle Wishoun

Licensing Paralegal

Per OhstromPer Ohstrom

VP, Sales

Shaun BakerShaun Baker

Technical Support

Steve RaycraftSteve Raycraft

Technical Support

Wayne BrownWayne Brown

Technical Support

Success Stories

At our phosphate mining and chemical plants located in White…

PCS Phosphate, White Springs, Florida

We held our first on-site TapRooT Training in mid-1995. Shortly after the training we had another…

Contact Us