Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team
- Landon, Lauren Blackwell
- Physical Description:
- 1 electronic document
- Additional Creators:
- Vessey, William B. and Barrett, Jamie D.
- Restrictions on Access:
- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available.
Free-to-read Unrestricted online access
- A team is defined as: "two or more individuals who interact socially and adaptively, have shared or common goals, and hold meaningful task interdependences; it is hierarchically structured and has a limited life span; in it expertise and roles are distributed; and it is embedded within an organization/environmental context that influences and is influenced by ongoing processes and performance outcomes" (Salas, Stagl, Burke, & Goodwin, 2007, p. 189). From the NASA perspective, a team is commonly understood to be a collection of individuals that is assigned to support and achieve a particular mission. Thus, depending on context, this definition can encompass both the spaceflight crew and the individuals and teams in the larger multi-team system who are assigned to support that crew during a mission. The Team Risk outcomes of interest are predominantly performance related, with a secondary emphasis on long-term health; this is somewhat unique in the NASA HRP in that most Risk areas are medically related and primarily focused on long-term health consequences. In many operational environments (e.g., aviation), performance is assessed as the avoidance of errors. However, the research on performance errors is ambiguous. It implies that actions may be dichotomized into "correct" or "incorrect" responses, where incorrect responses or errors are always undesirable. Researchers have argued that this dichotomy is a harmful oversimplification, and it would be more productive to focus on the variability of human performance and how organizations can manage that variability (Hollnagel, Woods, & Leveson, 2006) (Category III1). Two problems occur when focusing on performance errors: 1) the errors are infrequent and, therefore, difficult to observe and record; and 2) the errors do not directly correspond to failure. Research reveals that humans are fairly adept at correcting or compensating for performance errors before such errors result in recognizable or recordable failures. Astronauts are notably adept high performers. Most failures are recorded only when multiple, small errors occur and humans are unable to recognize and correct or compensate for these errors in time to prevent a failure (Dismukes, Berman, Loukopoulos, 2007) (Category III). More commonly, observers record variability in levels of performance. Some teams commit no observable errors but fail to achieve performance objectives or perform only adequately, while other teams commit some errors but perform spectacularly. Successful performance, therefore, cannot be viewed as simply the absence of errors or the avoidance of failure Johnson Space Center (JSC) Joint Leadership Team, 2008). While failure is commonly attributed to making a major error, focusing solely on the elimination of error(s) does not significantly reduce the risk of failure. Failure may also occur when performance is simply insufficient or an effort is incapable of adjusting sufficiently to a contextual change (e.g., changing levels of autonomy).
- Other Subject(s):
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20150016963.
- Copyright, Distribution under U.S. Government purpose rights.
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