“I’ll be right behind you guys,” you shout to your operations team as they make their way out of the office.
It’s 1 AM, and you’re finishing up the final report on tonight’s event.
There’s only one last item on your to-do list.
You’ll review the incident reports from tonight, tally everything on your spreadsheet, record the information on your Monday morning report, and be on your way home.
You take the final swig of your water and begin reviewing the numbers from tonight.
“Here we go,” you whisper to yourself.
“Only one record of vomit,” you continue.
“That's pretty good,” you think to yourself.
“One fight,” you read aloud.
You continue reviewing the reports.
But, after three more minutes of review, you stop in your tracks.
“Wait a minute,” you shout.
Something is not right here.
All personnel and departments record incident types differently.
You begin listing the variations.
- “1 vomit.”
- “1 puke.”
- “2 throw up.”
The list goes on and on.
Your report for Monday will be inaccurate if you don’t fix this error.
You must fix it.
It’s now 1:12 AM.
You call Jack from security and tell him that you’re going to be a little longer.
It looks like another night that you won’t get to say goodnight to your husband and children.
But, you must ensure your numbers are accurate, and not only for Monday but all future analysis of your property’s incidents.
You need standardization.
And, you need it now.
The Absence of Incident Management Standardization
We know there’s differentiation of terms throughout operations.
However, the absence of standardization within your property will have long-term consequences.
Let’s think about the purpose of management.
You must manage anything that occurs on your property, right?
You must be able to communicate and document these incidents.
Then you must be able to share this information with your team.
You compile the information in reports, so you can analyze the details.
Your team uses this information to run through tabletop exercises.
It’s how they improve their ability to handle these known incidents.
But, your team is only as capable as the training and know-how you give them.
You need them to be aware of their surroundings – and ready for what’s coming.
With that said, your management of various incidents involves many moving parts.
As a property without consistency, wouldn’t things get lost in the mix? Is this a typical scenario faced throughout your property? Do you deal with the constant frustration of everyone ‘not on the same page?’
- Does housekeeping report vomit as a protein spill?
- Does your operations team call the same incident vomit?
- Does engineering report a protein spill as throw up?
This lack of consistency affects your data.
Proactive operations regulate information.
They standardize it!
Now, it’s your turn.
Proactive operations establish guidelines for incident management.
This normalization ensures all incident types remain seamless across the organization.
You understand the importance of effective communication.
This practice is no different.
First-class operations recognize the importance of having a well-calibrated operation.
The flow of information cannot hinder your effectiveness.
Standardization is the answer.
Incident Management Systems Help Normalize Terminology
Nothing can slip through the cracks, especially when long-term analysis depends on the integrity of your data.
You must produce accurate Monday morning reports – every Monday.
Your data must be comprehensive and afford your team the ability to make incremental improvements over time to achieve your goal of maximum performance.
These enhancements help you deliver a safe, secure, and memorable experience for customers.
But, the challenge will always be human error.
It’s natural; we all forget things.
Who has time to remember 60-120 different incident types in the heat of the moment?
Better yet, who has time to search through your emergency management binder?
The answer: no one.
Incident management systems are the tool to integrate standardization into your management.
Use them to create a common language used amongst your personnel and departments.
- Customer Service
Do you see our point here?
You have lots of room for error.
Now, are you ready to be a proactive operation? Are you willing to take another step towards Proactive Operations?
Let’s do it!
Consider this: standardization of terms cannot be easily administered using pen and paper.
That’s why you must implement a system that not only standardizes the vocabulary used for incident types but also centralizes how your operation documents it.
All incidents entered into the system are captured and recorded in your critical reports.
That way, you’re no longer staying in your office until after 1 AM calculating inaccurate information.
It’s already done, and you have the correct information to make well-informed operational decisions for your property.
Over to You
Incident management standardization itself is not a sophisticated practice. What we’ve found is that in a high-stress operational environment where high priority tasks always come first, this slips through the cracks.
But, the data you need to make an informed decision relies on your ability to align all departments with the same language for capturing and communicating incidents.
So, what does ‘vomit’ mean to you?
Editor's note: This post was originally published in August 2016 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and freshness.