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Getting Smart With Risky Business: Tips For A Proactive Risk Management Culture

What’s your Risky Business? And we don’t just mean dancing around the living room in your underwear and pink dress shirt to “Old Time Rock and Roll” :).

Whether it’s narrowly avoiding a vehicle crossing the road to work, actively managing and communicating risks using Sensei Resource Heatmaps or dancing around your living room in your underwear and hoping not to get caught—life is risky—and in business the stakes are high. From balancing the supply and demand for people, expertise and equipment to resolving resourcing in your organisation, proactive risk management is crucial to the success of any portfolio of projects.

So how can your business become better at managing risk?

While working with an emerging investment bank on their risk management model recently, we came across several interesting guides and tools to improve risk management like the Victorian Government Risk Framework (VGRMF) which aligns well with Australian and New Zealand Standards. If you want practical guidance for risk management including an overall process and framework that applies to almost all industry verticals, we recommend you check it out!

Here at Sensei, we understand risks assessment and monitoring lies at the heart of effective risk management for our customers. That’s why we developed a Risks Heatmap for Sensei Reporting Hub that not only visually presents the overall state of identified risks at the project level but also at the portfolio and program levels. This Risks Heatmap relies on the impact and likelihood (probability) defined in the risk register at project level and can be extended to slice information based on Control Types and Control effectiveness.

Usually, Risks are part of project status reports but having a Risks Heatmap also helps in prioritising risks and making informed decisions at the portfolio and program levels. Additionally, the team at Sensei enhanced the views of the risks register in project sites to show colour indicators based on the assessed impact and likelihood at the risk level (and we all know a picture is worth a thousand words).

With risky business inevitable, why are we often so averse to risk and resistant to change?

Perhaps it’s time we seriously consider the multitude of benefits that come with adopting risk management tools and practices like VGRMF (accountability, awareness, a risk appetite and tolerance in stakeholders to name a few) and think about how you personally can encourage a positive risk culture at your workplace—and no—we’re not suggesting you tell your boss that you’re coming to work tomorrow sans pants or skirt :).

By Faraz Qureshi, Productivity and PPM Consultant at Sensei

Faraz is a passionate technical ninja who gets a kick out of solving complex problems around Office365, Project Online, Application Integrations, Data Analytics and Business Insights. Being PMP Certified and an active member in the PMI Sydney Chapter, he loves to help clients in PMOs and organisations using his experience and understanding of real PMO issues and solutions.


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