Repairing Leadership through Risk Management and Strategic Planning part II

Repairing Leadership through Risk Management and Strategic Planning part II

Sep 19th, 2013

Repairing Leadership through Risk Management and Strategic Planning part II

Riskope thanks Kelsey Fox for this interesting post

In part I  two methodologies named “critical self reflection” and “long run focus” were discussed.


The most crucial component of both methodologies is execution. In their detailed risk management plan, Software Tech Support Center states, “…the real key to software risk management is planning and implementing your plan”. ForwardMetrics’ Chief Strategic Officer, Scott Warner, also emphasized the significance of execution in his informational Strategic Planning FAQ by explaining “a Strategic Plan is only as good as the execution.” Execution depends upon consistency and active engagement—consistently implementing and working towards the goals set forth. Without this both risk management and strategic planning are worthless. For a risk management plan to remain effective, “…[one] must actively assess, control, and reduce software risk on a routine basis,” (

The level of attention and discipline required for active engagement is a standard that all leaders must acquire and strive to master. Jumping directly into more active engagement can be difficult, which is why risk management and strategic planning are the ideal tools for renewing leadership potential—this skill is deeply embedded in both practices. Guiding and implementing tasks requires presence, involvement, and effort. Without these abilities, a CEO is likely to become ineffective. Risk management demonstrates how the threat of losing relevancy and missing innovative opportunities comes from the inability to actively engage, “…feedback is necessary as risks are continuously monitored to update their status. What was a severe risk last week may be only a slight inconvenience this week while the ‘unlikely to occur’ risk of yesterday may be an ‘almost certain to occur’ risk today,” (GSAM, 6-22). Companies and markets change rapidly, just like threats of risk. Staying up to date as a leader allows leadership abilities to evolve alongside the growth of your organization.


Taking advantage of all resources available, especially employees, is a core aspect of exceptional executive authority and skill. Learning to delegate and setting up employees for success should be at the top of every CEO’s goals. Thinking more broadly benefits the entire organization and is another way to expand narrow focus into long-run thinking. Risk management practices globalized thought by taking every planner’s perspective into consideration when formulating a risk management plan. This is done “…so all accept the results of the process. ‘Second guessing’ and criticism after the fact are eliminated. Over time, trust develops and expectations are realized…[paving] the way for strengthened relationships…” (GSAM, 6-9). Strategic planning implements globalized thought with similar benefits because “The more people that are involved the more likely there will be ownership of the plan during implementation,” (Warner).

Globalized thinking goes beyond just reaching down the corporate ladder. It is a way of reframing traditional approaches to encourage possibility. Instead of viewing outside threats as a weakness, the SOAR method approaches them as opportunities by asking, “How do we collectively understand outside threats, and how can we reframe them into opportunities? How can we partner with others?” (Seitz). This is a perfect example of the expansive growth and potential that globalized thinking entails. Exposure to processes that train you to reframe questions will translate into fundamentally beneficial leadership habits.


The most obvious essential skill in the group carries perhaps the greatest weight with the greatest potential for creating damage and breeding dysfunction. Unfortunately communication happens to be one of those things that falls under the “easier said than done” category. Bad communication exposes organization to more risk and guarantees project failure. Risk management and strategic planning present an ideal launching point to rebuild and repair poor communication ability. The processes of both methodologies mandate communication be implemented throughout all stages in a variety of ways.

Beginning with the basics, the three main principles of every strategic plan include being concise, clear, and measurable (Warner). These principles should be applied to communication. The editing of messages required by both risk management and strategic planning trains perspective and existing leaders to apply these skills to their everyday communications.

Communication has a terrifyingly broad reach; “Poor or irregular communication can sabotage any project. A non-existent communications plan, or one that insufficiently delineates what should be communicated—by whom, to whom, in which form (call, site visit, or e-mail), and how often—can pose a significant risk to the project,” ( To prevent adding more risk to your business it is important to practice specificity in delegation and implementation. Clarity acts as its own method of risk management.

Experience practicing risk management and strategic planning benefit both your business and your personal performance. The critical thinking required by both presents an opportunity to practice essential leadership skills to grow beyond projected potential.

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Category: Crisis management, Risk analysis, Risk management

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