Anyone Afraid of Risk Management??

I think the answer would be yes.  At least in my experience.  Many organizations say they do risk management (i.e. Assessment, evaluation, influence factors, impact, severity, etc.…), but do they really?

Well … sort of.  When you really know what it takes to perform, assess and document risks with action plans, it does take allot of work to do it correctly and well enough provide benefit back to the subject project or business initiative at hand.  The activity needs to be a continual process as well, [and quite frankly], the typical Project or functional Manager simply does not have time with other responsibilities on their plate.

I believe the term ‘risk management’ frightens most supervisors and managers because, risks are an ominous thing that is negative in nature with the view that is something one cannot control.  Not true!  We control risk every day, if not every minute, of our daily routine.

Ask yourself, did you perform risk management today?  The initial thought is likely no.

Consider this then;

  • When you woke up this morning to prepare for work, were you thinking of organizing yourself in such a manner that you may be overlapping activity (such as breakfast preparation, grooming, putting your business items at the front door, etc.)? If so, you were managing risk in terms of time efficiency, not forgetting something at home and so on.  So, you did some risk management with mitigation – didn’t you?
  • If you drive a vehicle to work – Did you take a different route because of potential roadwork, or traffic notifications? Did you change lanes where you normally don’t because you assessed someone as being a bit dodgy in their driving behaviour.  You didn’t want to get into an accident, so you mitigated the risk.

As you can see, you do risk assessment & management constantly.  And for good reason.  You don’t want the risk to become an issue with an adverse impact and set of consequences.

So, lets bring this mindset back to work and our projects.  Its not that hard to do.  Start with the easy ones where mitigation is not all that difficult to attain.  Why not – if you don’t, then your project and business is taking a hit.  Learn to duck and weave by means of dealing with the risk.  It can actually be a bit fun and very rewarding to your bottom line and performance.

I hope you found this article interesting and would love to talk more with you about it.