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HQ&SPT BN,Camp PendletonHuman Factors Board“One Battalion’s Approach”
Col Rogers and staff
HQSPTBN Scene Setter 2008BN’s Force Preservation ProgramOverarching message and three pillarsHuman Factors BoardResults, lessons learned, validationSummary
Summer 2008 Change of CommandChallenges:No official or structured Battalion safety or force preservation programNo unit safety officer or unit medical officerDiverse, complex unit of 1700 personnel spread over Camp Pendleton complex“Base” mentalityPlan of attack
Plan of attackComprehensive safety approach at all levels and facets of commandLeverage all existing safety tools at disposal to include Base and regional assetsImprove process and incentivize participationShare lessons learned and “get smart” on resources, higher level aide, sister and partner units and organizations
BN’s Force Preservation Plan
Overarching message and three pillarsValue of each Marine to unit, Corps, family, life“THE MESSAGE”Barracks managementSafety ProgramHuman Factors Board
BN’s Force Preservation Program
Safety Program
Barracks Management
Human Factors Board
Overarching Message
Human Factors Board
Borrowed from aviation construct:BN core leadership meets weekly to discuss human factorsHowever, program enhanced by following:Mentorship and team leader programRisk category assignmentProactive and aggressive inclusion of outside sources/aide
Human Factors Board
FrequencyWeekly or as neededStanding core leadership:CO chairs (XO alternative weeks)XO, SGTMAJ, Chaplains, FRO, SACO, Company Commanders, Company 1stSGTs, Legal, mentors.Invitees as needed: Medical, family advocacy, guest speakers, mental health specialists, etc.Field trip PMEs as needed: Balboa, SARP, MHU, CSACC, FAP, etc.One trip to a facility (e.g. Balboa MHU) better than a 1000 e-mails and phone calls…made huge $$$ this way
Human Factors Board
Each Marine at risk assigned a categoryHigh risk (suicide ideation or attempt, overwhelming challenges, etc)Medium risk (Stressed, MHU, serious challenges, etc)Lower or emergent risk (facing or adjudicated discipline, divorce, loss, etc)In depth case files developed on each Marine, maintained by Co Commander/Section headsEach Marine at risk assigned dedicated mentorship:A senior Mentor (role model, daily contact, father/bigger sibling relationship) – SNCO,overwatchresponsibilitiesA Team Leader (an admired NCO, close contact, 24/7)An Assistant Teal Leader (close friend, equal, good influence, 24/7)
Human Factors Board
Unit chain of command heavily involved with Marine at riskContinual feedbackHFB discusses cases in depth weeklyMentors brought in to discuss lessons learned and be part of processRound table discussion improves core group knowledge and ability to solve issues; innovation and creativity encouragedMarines can move up or down in risk categories (or even “graduate” out of risk altogetherCases of great concern are given full attentionExtreme cases: 8-day and 30-day briefs are “pre-fabricated” tosussout what has been missed, or what BN has overlookedMeetings usually no longer than an hourBest hour of week spent
BNKNEWits Marines inside/outEmergent cases quickly identified; many times nipped earlyFeedback very positive from MarinesCulture of coming forward with issues or identifying emergent issues with each otherMentors and team leaders were gold mines and key to programDeveloped strong relationships with enablers/aide organizations
Lessons Learned
If can be done at a unit with no safety program, as diverse and disparate as HQSPTBN’s, can be done anywhereNot time intensive when alternative considered:Whole unit will come to stop to deal with a calamity (damage control mode); too late thenIt’s what we do; what we’re supposed to do: LeadSimple yet effective, instructive, collaborative, inclusive
No deaths due to safety, training mishapsOver 60% drop in DWIs within one yearSafety officer (Capt/S-4) won CMC’s Safety Officer of the Year award one year after taking over! Team effort.Marine feedback
Final thoughts and considerations





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MCBCP_HFB_One_Battalions_Approach -