How Can We Create a ‘Risk Based’ Culture?

ISO Standards, for the most part have moved to ‘Risk-based thinking’ as one of their themes. It makes complete sense to include this as part of the fabric of our organizations in order to reduce the chaos of unexpected events, as least the ones we can control.

ISO 31000:2018 has some ideas that will help build the foundation for weaving a ‘risk approach’ into our everyday activities. Risk is everywhere and, like rust, ‘risk never sleeps’.

In order to build this culture, Leadership has to walk this talk (5.1.1 d) and promote risk-based thinking to align with our:

  1. Purpose
  2. Leadership and Commitment
  3. Strategy
  4. Objectives
  5. Operation

Some specific steps that can help build this culture are:

  1. Consult and communicate
  2. Engage ALL stakeholders
  3. Ensure effective communication to make everyone aware of this initiative
  4. Measure the effectiveness of the risk methodology you’ve developed

ISO 31000 has more detail on how to develop a structured approach, but Leadership has to walk the talk and lead by example. Only through consistent application of risk-based thinking will we ever embed this into our organizational culture. It’s definitely worth the effort and creates a proactive approach that reduces unwanted results and adds to the bottom line!

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