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Managing Uncertainty Trifecta

Success in business is not usually the result of a single element, but rather a number of contributing factors.  Depending on the industry, it could be a combination of products or services, marketing, production, people, raw materials, location, etc. 

One thing all industries face today is increasing uncertainty created by the rapid changes taking place in the world of business.  Successfully managing this uncertainty requires a three-prong approach; strong leadership, quality decisions, and an integrated process.  I call it the Managing Uncertainty Trifecta.

Strong Leadership

It starts with the tone from the top.  This may be the most critical of the three elements because if it is lacking, any project will be doomed for failure.  It includes clearly stating roles and responsibilities and how they will be measured, as well as a commitment to providing the necessary resources.  It also includes communicating and consulting with internal and...

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Rethinking Risk

Look up the word “risk” in every English dictionary and you will see it defined as a chance or probability of loss, injury, or harm.  Games of chance date back to ancient times, with gambling being a part of society since the beginning of recorded history.  Probability theory evolved in the seventeenth century based upon mathematical efforts to predict the outcome of a game of chance.

Chance and probability rely on odds and statistics.  These are the mainstay of casinos and insurance companies.  Imagine a casino not knowing the odds of bets placed on the spin of a roulette wheel, or an insurance company not having the statistics on automobile accidents.  Either of these industries would be out of business if they did not have the right information.

Most businesses, however, operate in a world of uncertainty.  As an example, while the insurance company has the statistics on automobile accidents, they mean nothing to us.  We...

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Miracle on the Hudson

I recently went to the theater to see the movie Sully, the story of Chesley Sullenberger, an American pilot who became a hero after landing his damaged plane on the Hudson River in order to save the flight's passengers and crew. 

US Airways Flight 1549 was an Airbus A320-214 which, three minutes after takeoff from New York City's LaGuardia Airport on January 15, 2009, struck a flock of Canada geese just northeast of the George Washington Bridge and consequently lost all engine power.

Without enough time to go through checklists and procedures, Sullenberger had only minutes to make a quick decision about where to safely guide the aircraft.  Unable to reach any airports, he glided the plane to a ditching in the Hudson River off midtown Manhattan.  All 155 people aboard were rescued by nearby boats and there were few serious injuries.

Captain Sullenberger’s flight training, as a fighter pilot, glider pilot, and ultimately an airline pilot with nearly 5,000 hours in...

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Risk Committee

Modern risk management no longer operates in a silo; it is conducted as a team effort that promotes communication and shared responsibility. In this video I discuss the advantages of a risk committee and the written charter it should have to be successful.

 

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Risk Treatments

Risk is inherent in every business, and making the best informed decisions for managing those risks is critical in supporting the achievement of an organizations objectives. In this video I review the six different risk treatment options, all of which should be considered, and quite often they are used in combination.


 
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