Redefining Risk


Maybe we should define risk as what needs to go right, instead of what could go wrong.

Although I would like to claim credit for this view of risk, it came from James Bone of Global Compliance Advisors, LLC. I met James at a Compliance Week round table last week discussing risk management and regulatory developments for the financial services industry.

By changing the definition, you are now looking at risk through the operations of your company and its business plan. You are no longer the doomsayer, worrying about the myriad of things that could go wrong, some of which are likely to highly unlikely. You are now focusing on implementing your company’s business plan.

Compliance and risk professionals need to keep an eye on what may go wrong. But, as James points out, it is just as important to make sure things are going right.

Image is by anarchosyn: RISK AWR WC T7L LosAngeles Graffiti Art / CC BY-SA 2.0


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One Response to Redefining Risk

  1. Kristen Pike September 23, 2009 at 2:30 pm #

    Doug – I think this is very true. Of course, it’s important to consider what can go wrong, but paying equal attention to what needs to go right can mean better strategic planning and management of strategic risks.

    It’s easy to become overwhelmed by the negative side of risk. It is most definitely helpful to step back once in a while and view it in a different light.