December 5, 2022 | Barb Carr

Don’t Be Misled by Academic Studies about High-Reliability Organizations

rickover designing nuclear power plant

Mark Paradies will present “How Admiral Rickover Built the First High-Reliability Organization.”

When & Where?

This presentation is scheduled during Best Practice Session 9 at the 2023 Global TapRooT® Summit, at the Margaritaville Lake Resort, Lake Conroe, near Houston, Texas, on April 26 – 28, 2023 (Pre-Summit Courses are scheduled for April 24 – 25).

Session Description

Mark Paradies presents How Admiral Rickover Built the First High-Reliability Organization

Admiral Rickover built the FIRST (and perhaps only) high-reliability organization – the Nuclear Navy. Here is the story of how he created it, the standards he set, and the performance he achieved (as Forbes magazine wrote: America’s Nuclear Navy is one of the oldest and largest nuclear organizations in the world and has the best safety record of any industry), and the ways that it has lived on long after Admiral Rickover was retired (in 1982 after 63 years of service). Not all of the stories are success stories. There are potential improvements that could be implemented. But if you understand the standards maintained by the Nuclear Navy, you will understand why governmentally required process safety programs fall short and continue to allow major process safety accidents to occur.

Mark Paradies, the speaker for this session, was interviewed by Admiral Rickover, served on two nuclear-powered ships, was qualified as an “Engineer” by NAVSEA 08 (the headquarters Nuclear Navy organization), and has studied Rickover’s methods for decades. Don’t be misled by academic studies of high-reliability organizations by people who have never achieved high reliability. These high-reliability key factors are from someone who has been there, done that, and paid the price.

Speaker Bio

Mark Paradies

Mark Paradies is the President of System Improvements. He has 44 years of experience in high-reliability organizations, process safety, equipment operations and maintenance, incident investigation, and root cause analysis.

His career started in Admiral Rickover’s Nuclear Navy (where he earned an Engineer Qualification). He also worked for DuPont in process safety, human factors, and performance improvement management before he started System Improvements in 1988. Mark worked with Linda Unger to create the TapRooT® System and with Heinz Bloch on the original development of the Equifactor® Troubleshooting Techniques. He also is a co-creator of the Stopping Human Error Course.

He has a BS in Electrical Engineering and an MS in Nuclear Engineering (with an emphasis on human factors), both from the University of Illinois. Mark has worked on several incident investigations and root cause analysis standards-setting committees, including:

  • the IEEE Standards Committee for root cause analysis in the nuclear industry, and
  • the AICHE/CCPS Committee that wrote the book (version 2 and 3) on investigating process safety incidents.
Operational Excellence, Summit, Summit - Sessions, Summit - Speakers
Show Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *