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Over the Wall: How to Overcome Risk Assessment Challenges

The more people you invite to a party, the higher the chance that some will bring other, uninvited guests. The same seems to be true of business digitalization. In Pearl Zhu’s Future of CIO blog, the risks of this ever growing wall are examined and paired with potential remedies.

Inviting Risk Prevention

Not the least of a risk manager’s worries, business sponsorship for preventative measures is always a hard sell, especially when expectations for improvement are high and pitfalls are out of sight. What this should signal for the risk manager of digitalization is that buy-in is the place to start. For managers and team members alike, a “forward looking assessment framework” is in order, one that strikes the right tone about digital risk.

Setting the Right Vibe

The scope of your assessment should be broad, but not overly complex. The idea is to get the commitment of all employees and management involved, not just those who are leading projects and initiatives. This brings us to the ever-significant term of risk culture. A well-adjusted risk culture works autonomously to locate and eliminate or minimize threats. At a party where everyone is acquainted and communicates well, the risky individual or outsider will be spotted immediately.

Keep the Good Times Rolling

Furthermore, properly identified risk has a way of structuring and prioritizing resources. No one wants the fun to be spoiled, so the biggest barriers to progress are escalated and eliminated first. Also, don’t let organizations fool you. Some will claim to be conducing enterprise risk management when in fact they are engaged in enterprise list management: the practice of listing risk without taking action to prevent or mitigate those risks.

Last off, executives (who are like hosts of the party) should have an aggregate list of everyone and everything in the digitalization process. In other words, an aggregation process and calibrated risk scheme.

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About Eric Anderson

Eric Anderson is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. He is an intern at Computer Aid Inc., pursuing his master's degree in communications at Penn State University.

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