One goal of the International Team Training Center (ITTC) is to conduct research into the unique dynamics teams operating in high-risk fields must manage. Anxiety is ever present in organizations, especially in high-hazard high-risk environments, where mistakes can often lead to accident and death. Anxiety can trigger primitive fears that can lead to the creation of social defenses and anxiety-relieving rituals, often at the expense of more rational decision-making. Successful high-risk teams and organizations need employees who can confront their anxieties and work through them, rather than use them as scapegoats for their performance failures.
ITTC is currently exploring ways that:
- A diverse group of participants can learn to manage perceptions of uncertainty and risk, thus making better choices and decisions, and becoming better able to perform in their high-risk professions over time.
- Employees can be trained to anticipate, identify, and manage fear-associated responses including acute emotions, unusual physical sensations, and potentially debilitating behaviors and group processes.
- Training can impact development of effective coping strategies for decreasing employees' fear, astonishment, and misconduct following trauma exposure and increasing self-control, mutual support, and mission effectiveness.
- Training can improve problem solving and performance under stress and its impact on coping, adjustment and functioning.
- Training can improve employees' ability to provide support to co-workers during and after trauma exposure and minimize negative reactions to others' disclosure of distress and adjustment difficulties.
- Training can influence social cohesion under stressful conditions and what impact this training may have on unit and individual outcomes during and after trauma exposure.