Category Archives: James Newman

Practitioner Spotlight: James D. Newman – Are you looking to hire a Human Performance Practitioner?

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James_D. NewmanDoes your organization need a fresh look at Human Performance? How satisfied are you with your current Human Performance Training Program? Is your Observation program being effective? Could you use an expert on measuring and improving performance in your organization? James D. Newman is the answer to your problem. This post is spotlighting this site’s main author and creator.

Why is James any different than anyone else?

To sum up what makes James unique, he is dedicated and experienced.

James is a committed father with a vast background of interests.  He has worked primary and secondary systems at BWR and PWR nuclear power plants, has been a mobile Disc Jockey since he was 16, was a lead singer for a few rock bands, and has also built robots for competition.

He currently mentors college students and other HU practitioners, offers HU and Knowledge Transfer improvements as a keynote speaker at conferences and training venues, develops poster presentations and designs websites, actively participates in professional organizations (ASTD and NA-YGN), creates and teaches courses for thousands of nuclear workers and leadership, and is an author and podcast host—all while pursuing higher education.

Personal philosophy

The most frequent question I am asked is, “Where do I find the time?” There are usually a few hours left daily after the kids go to bed to research and make phone calls or e-mails. The rest of it is carefully fit into my life’s schedule. If you care about something enough, you make the time.

Always give the person you’re interviewing following an event the benefit of the doubt—there is a great chance the error he or she made is not the cause for the problem, but more the consequence of a deeper problem.

As an HU Practitioner, never be a full-time Root Cause team member because it takes away from your other full-time responsibilities to other priorities at the station. Instead, offer to check in at a regular frequency to help with human performance issues and interviews.

Always consider tapping into your network of contacts and associates when you’re questioning a process or criterion.

When designing training, always use ADDIE and make sure your evaluation process is challenging and significant.

Use the best software available to track, trend, and report issues and observations.

Why are you leaving your dream job?

Based on life changes, I will be moving to MA/RI/CT area within the next few months (after acquiring a stable position). My extended family lives in the tri-state area, so this means I am currently looking for a Human Performance position where I can live and work from. I am willing to travel, but not willing to spend weeks away from my children. The ideal location would be the area between Springfield, Boston, and Providence, but I would consider nearby options.

A little more about me

I’m 41 and have been working in commercial nuclear power since I was 19. I started right out of a Nuclear Engineering Technology degree program as a contracting junior mechanic and quickly transferred in-house into Instrument & Controls where I spent 15 years performing all aspects of a technician’s work – Surveillances, Preventative Maintenance, Troubleshooting, Corrective Maintenance and new installations from all areas of the plant to the Control Room. In 2007 I was chosen as the stations full-time Human Performance Coordinator. In 2010 I took that experience to another nuclear station as I started my Workforce Education Development degree over 1500 miles away. For nearly 18 months I flew back and forth on weekends to go through an amazing program while fully taking advantage of the long weekends offered by working four 10-hour days.

For the past 4 years I’ve been developing and implementing training, surveys, reports, and metrics while building an amazing world-wide network of Performance Improvement and Training professionals. Last year in May, I started this blog and a podcast of the same name, and that has opened the network even more. One of my largest passions is to teach out of the Affective Realm – to help someone value an idea, concept, expectation or requirement. I am extremely inventive with my training technique and activity creation to make memorable topical points. I am also very passionate about having a Safety Conscious Work Environment. I have done a lot of work with the Nuclear Safety Culture Monitoring Panel at my current station, and even considered Employee Concerns as a future possibility.

In the past year along with my fulfilling work at a utility, I’ve given presentations and support to a Midwestern Transmission and Distribution company, and provided Human Performance training to multiple CEOs and Vice Presidents from various large Kansas companies. The Kansas City chapter of ASTD recognized my work by awarding me a “Best Practice” for training, and subsequent presentation of the course to the chapter. The Omaha ASTD chapter has since asked me to present there, as well. I’ve attended at my own expense Omaha’s ASSE Chapter meeting for OPPD’s presentation on a stripped down HU program, keynote addresses at ICMA conferences (Jim Collins, Amy Cuddy,  and Daniel Pink), and also the New Media Expo conference in Las Vegas to become better at blogging and podcasting.

I am looking for stability, but also looking for an opportunity to really help an organization (or consultant firm helping organizations) with my experience, creativity, motivation and attitude. I also bring my valuable team of industry friends and contacts for benchmarking at a moment’s notice.

Click here for a Power Point presentation I gave to the Young Professionals Congress in 2007.

Some Prezis I’ve put together:

Leveraging Blogs and Podcasts for Human Performance Training (Built for a poster presentation at INPO’s Human Performance Conference I was asked to give in September 2013)

Awesome Podcast Content (My favorite Human Performance Podcasts)

The Me (A compilation of work I’ve been doing and tools used. One of my SIU Professors asked me to present in October 2013 to a WED class what work in this field could be like. This was 1550 miles away from my home on my own time and budget.)

Note that some of my training products will be posted in ebook form in the near future for a cost through this site.

Contacting me

Click on the LinkedIn logo at the top of the page for my LinkedIn profile where you can find my resume and more about me. If you are not a LinkedIn member, please email me for a resume.

If you would like to contact me about a Human Performance position or opportunity, please email me directly at or call me after 5pm EST 860-917-5768.

A note for returning HU Tool blog readers

There is a lot more to me than what this post suggests, but I recognize the readers of this blog are looking for something more than learning about the author of it. I hope you do not mind that I posted about myself, instead of a different topic. At this time, all of the costs for operating the blog and podcasts have been my own, so I feel comfortable using it to leverage potential opportunities that may not be discovered otherwise. Thank you for your continued support. Every email I recelive that says thanks for authoring this blog means a lot to me.

Please stay tuned – I have been compiling upcoming posts on:

  • INPO’s Cumulative Impact document reactions
  • Preventing disasters
  • Decision making
  • Leadership alignment