Saturday, 29 November 2014

At the Risk of sounding negative …


Risk Assessments often become a series of negative checklists to the type of activity you are undertaking. Focusing on this almost encourages the person doing the assessment to look for what’s going wrong than right. (Which is necessary of course) however, on Thursday when I was at a breakfast seminar, a gentleman mentioned this very thing which got me thinking even more.

Many people resent risk management related activities; this process unwelcomes the impression of a tedious task which has to be completed for the benefit of regulators and the risk team. Philosophically speaking we lose the human touch and become more mechanical, quickly going through the risk assessment, filing it away so we can then continue to carry on with the planned activity and sometimes coming out of it thinking ‘perhaps this isn’t a good idea anyway, it seems like too much hassle’.

We are good at highlighting what can go wrong but indeed, do stray away from thinking about the many positive solutions to face these risks. Why can’t we get creative and mindful? Life isn’t about a serious of checklists and rigid assessments. Yes, we have to be aware but that shouldn’t stop us from doing what we want. Olly Hicks in the presentation  Thursday morning said he had to complete a big stack of risk assessments for his solo rowing across the Atlantic Ocean. Despite all the risks, he still did it anyway.

The goal is to use risk assessments as an intelligent tool to identify what can go wrong, put in place contingencies where we, empower people using it and use it to help us make better and conscious decisions.  After all, life is a risk. The action of inaction is a risk in itself!

RISKercizing until next time..