Mitigated Speech

Plane crashes are not always due to bad engines. A 1993 Boeing study of aviation accidents points to teamwork and communication failures. 
 
“The whole flight deck design is intended to be operated by two people, and that operation works best when you have one person checking the other, or both people willing to participate” 
 
Things get tricky if one pilot knows something important and keeps the other in the dark. Or if one does something wrong, and the other pilot fails to catch the error. Or refuses to.
 
The study points to co-pilots having used Mitigated speech. Mitigated speech is a form of communication that is watered down to take the edge taken off to avoid conflict with another individual. Rather than asking someone to take any action, the same is gift wrapped as a polite request or even as a question. 
 
The co-pilot is not there to take over if the pilot is incapacitated. The co-pilot is there to co-operate and ensure the safety of the operation. 
 
While the specific cultural attribution in the study has been debated, it is widely acknowledged that cultural dimensions, when leveraged well, can elevate global teamwork to a whole new level. 

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