Risk management is a team sport
Why it’s critical to involve everyone in your program
It goes without saying that teamwork is integral to the success of an organization. Within a risk management program, it is vitally important that all key staff members and departments are involved in order to ensure risks are identified and mitigated properly and timely.
Let’s dig a little deeper into what teamwork means within the context of an organizational risk management program and why it’s so important.
What does teamwork in risk management look like?
In a report published by Carnegie Mellon University, Higuera et al. describe risk management in a team setting as “the organizational structure and operational activities for managing risks throughout all phases of the life-cycle of a software-dependent development program such that all individuals within the organizations, groups, departments, and agencies directly involved in the program are participating team members.”
You may be thinking, “Wow, that’s a thorough definition. But what does it mean?” Good question. Simply put, what Higuera and his fellow authors are describing is a risk management program in which every stakeholder within the organization, and each department with a vested interest in mitigating risk, is at the table and actively participating in the organization’s risk management processes.
Let’s break it down further. Higuera states that the team risk management approach is built upon nine key principles:
Shared product vision
Forward-looking search for uncertainties
Value of individual perception
Integration into program management
Systematic and adaptable methodology
Routine and continuous processes
Why teamwork matters
Effective teamwork ensures that each component of the plan, do, check and act cycle occurs. Collaboration provides opportunities to identify and examine various points of exposure and vulnerability, as each department and function of the organization perceives risk differently and has different objectives.
What’s at stake?
Ultimately the fiscal health of your organization. For example, if departments and staff within a financial institution are not in sync with the organization’s process for mitigating compliance risk, significant fines and exposure for clients could result. In this scenario, a team-centered approach ensures that controls on the bank’s processes, procedures and technologies are implemented organization-wide.
Go forth and work together
That’s our case for teamwork – now get out there and collaborate.