Risk management is an essential part of any project: Whether you’re climbing a mountain or changing a light bulb, there are always risks. For anyone who’s ever been leery about flagging risks, or is just looking for some new approaches, here are five tips.

  1. Think of risk management as a way to get what you need, when you need it – Making risks visible to your leadership gives them enough lead time to provide relief when it is needed
  2. Don’t forget: People can be risks, too – Be sure to include people risks in your risk register—they can affect your progress as much as more inanimate factors.
  3. Create guiding principles for risk management To create clarity and promote transparency around risk management, the best approach is to set guiding principles that govern the process. The rules should be simple and broadly communicated throughout the organization.
  4. Use the 30/20/10 rule of thumb – Identify risks at the beginning of the project that, if realized, would affect 30 percent of the schedule, budget or results. Midway through the project, the goal is to lower the potential impact of risks to 20 percent of the schedule, budget or results. By the end of the project, the project should carry risks containing no more than a 10 percent impact.
  5. Don’t forget the bigger picture – To manage the risk of irrelevance, conduct an assessment on a recurring basis of how your project fits into your organization’s strategy and portfolio

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