Is risk management really that effective?

I was looking for a blog posting put out a few years ago. Sadly, I did not find it but I did find something else….

Yes, I found a blog posting called where’s my whistle? I explored the need for a systematic risk process for projects. I reflected that while this has got better, it is not that much better. …..

In the last 6 month I have seen an interesting array of clients. I discussed the need for a systematic approach to risk management and I am assured this happens. But, when I meet those on the programmes I run I find this is not the case. Risk is not seen as a key process. It is not even seen in some instances. People have described risk management as weak, not owned by the project sponsor or project board and generally not good enough.

Are we really managing risks or playing at it?

Now the interesting thing to pint out is that the blog posting where’s my whistle was written in August 2010 almost 6½ years ago. I asked myself has the management of risks become more effective. No is how I answered.

What do you think, is risk management more effective than it used to be?



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4 Responses to Is risk management really that effective?

  1. Harry Hall says:

    Great question. I find that the focus on risk management varies from one organization to another. It largely depends on the senior leaders. If the senior leaders lead by identifying, evaluating, responding to, and controlling risks, others follow.

    There is certainly an increased focus on enterprise risk management (ERM) in the United States. I am seeing cases where the ERM program is influencing departments, business units, PMOs, programs, and projects to use risk management to help their organizations achieve their goals and strategies.

    • Ron Rosenhead says:

      Hi Harry, great to hear from you.

      I’m delighted that enterprise risk management is increasing across the water. The issue for me is that i have seen little or no movement here! Yes, a lot really does depend on the senior management of a business and my work on project sponsorship really shows this.

      What is the solution over here….that is the question!

      Thanks Harry

  2. It is as effective as it has always been – if people follow the process. If the project sponsor or the project board is not committed to Risk Management and addressing risks as they are identified – then no, it won’t be effective. It doesn’t make Risk Management any less effective. It means they are not following the process.

    • Ron Rosenhead says:

      Hi Joelle, thank you for your comments. You said some pretty important stuff in such a short note:

      if people follow the process….people do not seem to have the rigour to be able to do this. To me it is common senses…
      if the project sponsor and Board is not committed to risk management – – a key issue. If they were then they would be imposing their views on project managers. I see little evidence of this

      Sadly, I disagree with your statement; it does not make it any less effective. I have seen little evidence that risk management has improved and yes, I think the comments you made reflect on that.

      Thanks again Joelle for your contribution.

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