Letters: May 2017 | AIChE

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Letters: May 2017


Bypassing Safety Systems

Louisa Nara’s Spotlight on Safety article on the dangers of bypassing safety systems in CEP’s Feb. 2017 issue (p. 19) is an excellent reminder of the potential pitfalls of this sometimes necessary practice. It underscores the need for clearly defined procedures, and for a well-trained and disciplined workforce. I especially appreciated the personal example she used to illustrate how uncontrolled safety system bypassing can have tragic consequences. I’ve used this article to raise awareness and stimulate conversations with colleagues. I hope other readers will do the same.

Tom Walsh

Morristown, NJ

Teaching Teamwork

Regarding the editorial on teamwork in the Feb. 2017 issue (p. 3): Either you are psychic, or the stars were aligned, or you just have to believe in coincidences. I received the issue and read the editorial on Wednesday. On Tuesday and Thursday of the week, I was teaching college classes on — guess what? Teamwork.

I teach classes in a special college program for individuals in mental health recovery to help folks return to careers, college, or just life. I teach college skills, time management, speaking with confidence, decision-making (my favorite subject), goal-setting, cyber safety and protection, and, of course, team building and teamwork. I incorporated a few quotes from your editorial and the headline, Together Everyone Achieves More (I like that a lot!), in my class on Thursday*. The timing could not have been better.

I don¹t teach in a conventional stand-and-lecture way. We do exercises after some discussion of the advantages, obstacles, and goals of teamwork. With and without teamwork exercises. we do show the value of teamwork and how to work together — including paper origami following instructions while blindfolded, Uncle Joe’s Suitcase, Who am I?, Landmine, and Truth-Truth-Lie. We do have fun and students take away team working skills and experiences that prove that teamwork is better than trying to go it alone.

So, thank you! Now some of your words* are part of a course helping people in recovery.

* Don’t worry — I simply read the words, no written use or copyright infringement!

Byron Goldstein

Glenside, PA

Teams and Careers

I read the Feb. 2017 editorial on the publishing team at CEP and Loraine Kasprzak’s Career Corner article on tests that can help you reinvent your career (Apr. 2017, p. 22), and would like to offer some comments to extend the thinking. Both in terms of career choices and team functioning, it is critical to understand how individuals on a team relate to each other. Kasprzak’s article mentions the use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) as a career assessment tool, and I completely agree. I have met many people who have taken this assessment (or one of its validated spin-offs) but can’t remember what their four letters are (Extroversion/Introversion, Sensing/INtuition, Thinking/Feeling, Judging/Perceiving). This means they have not taken advantage of the deep insight...

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