Risk Management

by Peter Parkes

Step 1: Identifying risks

Forget all the fancy tools – this is the most important part of risk management. If you are at least aware what your key risks are, you are probably dealing with them to some extent anyway, albeit maybe at an unconscious level.

Any of us can brainstorm what our risks are and write them down in a table. It adds more value, however, if we consult others in order to get a more complete picture, more viewpoints and a moderated view. Depending on the size and nature of the operation or project, this consultation process may take the form of setting aside time in a meeting to discuss risks with colleagues or team members or taking part in a risk workshop (see Organising a risk workshop).

It is best if we capture our outputs in some logical format, for example by using a risk register (see Starting a risk register). This will help us to communicate the risks to a wider group or to different levels to the organisation.