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Topics: Benefits Realization, Risk Management
Identifification of business risks to the organization?

When you do risk identification you focus only on the project risks or also the potential business risks (to the organization)?

I seethe most people (including myself) only focus on project risks but should we also think about business risks?
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If you are project manager your focus must be project risk. In fact, if you loose that focus you will fail. Other risks have been addressed before the project was approved (usually inside the business case). Obviously, as you know, all related to risks is a dynamic activity but you have to not loose the focus.

As a project manager you are responsible to forecast and manage risks to your project. But, as employee and being in management part; it is your responsibility to use your knowledge, information and ability to forecast any threat/risk to your stakeholders and to organization itself. So you should have forecast in all respects; on project and business part as well.

Diogo, if the business risks are because of the project that you are managing, then include them in the risk matrix. Any risk that affects your organizations affects the project also indirectly. But you highlight them in the project risk matrix only if it is caused by the project.
The other general business risks that affect your organization are not included in the risk matrix

It's ok to think about business risk, but managing that risk isn't part of the project. Unless its a huge project and the businesses depends on it, or the project is actually there to lower business risk. For example, if your company has forecasted huge losses for the year, and they have identified a project that could make them huge profits, maybe even save them from closing, you can bet as the project manager you will be heavily involved in business risk management, and that your management of the project's risk (ultimately resulting in the success or failure of the project) will in fact be decreasing/increasing business risk.

Thank all for your feedback.
I started this topic because I had this discussion with some 2 weeks ago.
Sante's sentence "It's ok to think about business risk, but managing that risk isn't part of the project. " summarizes my point of view.
Nevertheless I can not fully disagree with who defends that business risks should also be tracked by PM.
I think it depends if you follow PMBoK definition (or not), and the project that is being analysed concerning risks.

Your first concern is risk to the project, these you should be managing.
Risk to the organisation are to be identified by anyone in the organisation, that include any PM.

Diogo -

As you might be aware, the Sixth Edition of the PMBOK Guide has introduced a new risk response, escalate. Business risks which are identified in passing by the project team but which are not directly attributable to or controllable by the team could be escalated to the most appropriate business owner for response purposes.


Your prime responsibility is to focus on your project and manage only your project risk. But if you identified any risk related to businses risk of your organiztion then you can pass on the informatin to conern people responsible for managing it

As a project manager the focus should to identify potential risks that could affect your project.

A project brings about Change . A change affects the way a Business does things. Through good stakeholder engagement , a Project Manager keeps his business stakeholders informed of their project risks.
The project risks may impact or create business risks, the handling of which is the responsibility of the business stakeholder.
Some organizations also have a Risk Manager , who is an independent consultant (Independent because they are part of a corporate strategy division , not so much Manufacturing or Human Resources) who helps any project or business unit identify risks to their area.
The Project Manager can be well served by leveraging their expertise to help identify the Project Risks . At the same time , they may well be able to help identify business risks which will then be the responsibility of your Business Stakeholder.
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"Few people think more than two or three times a year; I have made an international reputation for myself by thinking once or twice a week."

- George Bernard Shaw