by Gary Hamilton Jeff Hodgkinson Gareth Byatt Brian Munroe
What are the common reasons that projects fall into troubled waters and what steps can be taken to get them back on the right path? Depending on the organization you work in and your level of authority, appropriate responses will vary, but here some corrective actions that span many situations.
The Black Swan concept warns us to expect the unexpected, but when it comes managing risk we should be careful to use the term properly and not dilute it through misunderstanding. If we mistakenly think that risks with very low probability and high impact are Black Swans, then we remain unprepared and vulnerable to genuinely unknowable unknowns.
There are three important ways in which the typical risk process is flawed: a failure to turn analysis into action; lumping risk issues in other documents, instead of highlighting them separately; and not capturing lessons learned.
Risk management is all about asking and answering the right questions. It starts with broad concerns and concludes with well-defined ideas to address them. And it requires a basic understanding of question types and how they best map to the risk management process.
To manage risk effectively on our projects, we need to deal with uncertainty, understand why it matters, follow a structured process, and take into account the human side that influences judgment and decisions.
All the latest time-management and process-optimization tools in the world can’t make you stop procrastinating or hold a difficult conversation. Confronting the “elephant in the room” once a day, or even once a week, will make you a better project leader. Here are five practical tips for doing it today.
Beyond probability and impact, there are several other important characteristics of risks that project and portfolio management leaders can use to more instructively answer this seemingly simple but all-important question.