Select Page


What Is the Silver Lining for Projects?

What Is the Silver Lining for Projects?
By Marge Tam

The proverb “For every cloud there is a silver lining” can be interpreted as for every difficult situation there is some good to it. The proverb is of said to the person that would welcome such an encouragement during trying times, and the person is unable to see any positive way forward.

In the framework of Project Management, the Project Risk Management Process brings the silver lining to the uncertainties that come with managing anything that occurs in the future. Many people tie the word ‘risk’ with the negative connotation. However, according to the PMBOK, there are both negative and positive risks. The negative risk has potential impacts downstream to the overall health of the project projects such as project slip, budget overrun, and unsatisfied customers. While positive risks are essentially opportunities that brings about return on investment, increased revenue and overall process improvements. Read the Complete Article

How to Develop a Plan to Manage IT Risks

How to Develop a Plan to Manage IT Risks
By Harry Hall

Want to know the secret to managing IT risks?

Drumroll please…

A Risk Management Plan.

Simple, huh?

So simple as to be, well, let’s say completely useless. Because if you knew the secret to consistently managing IT risks, you’d already be doing it, right?

But instead, you continue doing what you’ve always done with a gnawing apprehension that your worst nightmare is just around the corner. You are too busy to “add risk management” to your list of things to do.

The problem is that many CIOs – even the top-tier CIOs – lack an adequate grasp of their IT risks. Even these top dogs understand that they’re one event away from losing the farm. Which risks are greatest?

  • Data security breach with reputational harm
  • Regulatory risks
  • Social media
  • Recruiting and retaining qualified IT staff
  • Improper balance of outsourcing
  • Cloud technologies
  • Transition to agile methods
  • Disaster recovery
  • Outdated operating systems
  • Data on user-owned mobile devices
  • Third-party risks

But there is a way to give you a better chance of not only surviving, but thriving in the face of great uncertainty. Read the Complete Article

Why Avoidance Should Be 1 of Your 7 Risk Responses

Why Avoidance Should Be 1 of Your 7 Risk Responses
By Harry Hall

Earlier I wrote about seven ways to respond to risks. One of the risk responses is avoidance. The focus of this strategy is to ensure the risk does not occur…that is, we eliminate the cause of the risk.

My Personal Story of Stupidity

It was Fall, and I had raked leaves in my back yard into three piles. I was trying to decide what to do with them. I knew there was a ban on burning in my area. We had been extremely dry for months.

What were my options? I could bag the leaves. I could carry the leaves down into the woods…or I could burn the leaves.

I thought to myself – surely I could burn the leaves. No one will ever know. Later, I would soak the areas to ensure the fires were extinguished.

Before I went to bed, I checked the three areas again…no embers, no sparks, no smoke. Read the Complete Article

Risk Management… The What, Why, and How

Risk Management… The What, Why, and How
By Michael Stanleigh

What Is Risk Management?

Risk Management is the process of identifying, analyzing and responding to risk factors throughout the life of a project and in the best interests of its objectives. Proper risk management implies control of possible future events and is proactive rather than reactive. For example:

An activity in a network requires that a new technology be developed. The schedule indicates six months for this activity, but the technical employees think that nine months is closer to the truth. If the project manager is proactive, the project team will develop a contingency plan right now. They will develop solutions to the problem of time before the project due date. However, if the project manager is reactive, then the team will do nothing until the problem actually occurs. The project will approach its six month deadline, many tasks will still be uncompleted and the project manager will react rapidly to the crisis, causing the team to lose valuable time. Read the Complete Article

Risk Management Within Your Project Management Process

Risk Management Within Your Project Management Process
By Cora Systems

Having a process in place to manage your projects is highly recommended as it gives project managers a set structure to work from. However no matter how tight this process is there is always the threat of something coming out of the woodwork and putting a halt to the project. Therefore it is highly advisable to include risk management in your project management process.

I have seen that by having a project management process which includes risk management will increase the chance of projects and programs being completed and implemented successfully. A well planned process needs to be flexible enough to handle the unexpected and ensure that a project is delivered on time and within budget. An organization that fails to include risk management into their project management process faces a possible threat to the success of the overall project.

Risk management should be discussed at the beginning when the project manager is drawing up the plan. Read the Complete Article

Plan Risk Responses

Plan Risk Responses
By Simona Belindean, Northwest University

The benefit to knowing the risks that could possibly affect the outcome of the project is that in identifying risks, a great project manger will also pinpoint and pursue the best possible solutions. For example, in knowing that it will rain on the that day we will be spectators at a much anticipated outdoor soccer game, we will use that knowledge of the weather forecast and take rain coats, boots, hats, and umbrellas – to not only be prepared for the rain, but to ensure enjoyment and fulfillment at the planned outing.

  • Avoid

    By having and utilizing responses to negative risks, a project manager effectively reduces the impact of threats to the project. In knowing that a specific product will cause an increase in the overall budget of the project, the project manager (or team member) can shop around for a less expensive manufacturer, and if successful, completely avoid the threat of the higher cost product.

Read the Complete Article

Risk Management for Project Managers

Risk Management for Project Managers
By Michelle Symonds

Every project has potential risks that could cause things to go horribly wrong. You need to be aware what the risks are and have contingency plans to avoid the project being a complete failure.

How to Identify the Risks

Risk management is at the heart and soul of project management, and failing to practice it can have bad effects on the project. The effort put in at the beginning to help be prepared for the risks before they happen is the best way to avoid them, and ensure the success of the project. The benefits of risk management are huge, providing you deal with uncertainties proactively.

To identify the risks you need to keep an open mind and focus on scenarios that might happen in the future. Talk to team members; find out what experiences they have had on this type of project in the past. Read the Complete Article

Why Projects Succeed: Take Corrective Action

Why Projects Succeed: Take Corrective Action
By Roger Kastner

“Everyone has a plan, until they get punched in the mouth.” —Mike Tyson

Maybe you’ve heard the project manager axiom “plan the work, work the plan,” which suggests there’s value in both creating a plan and then closely managing that plan. But to Mike Tyson’s point, shouldn’t you also have a plan for when the original plan unexpectedly doesn’t work?

I’ve had the privilege to speak to over 1,000 practitioners over the years at project management presentations and classes, and in almost every instance I ask each audience to, “raise your hand if you’ve ever been on a project that did not have some unforeseen problem knock the project sideways to the point of putting the objectives at significant risk?” How many hands do you think I’ve seen over the years?

(Well, OK, there was one, but the person was referring to a two-week “project.” So I’ve learned to phrase the question differently.)

So, if 99.9% of the practitioners I’ve spoken with have had something significant and unforeseen knock 100% their projects sideways, of course you would expect the capability of “take corrective action” to be a core expectation of all projects managers, right? Read the Complete Article

Managing Low Priority Project Risks

Managing Low Priority Project Risks
By Gratien Gasaba


Risks management is all about the identification and the treatment of risks. The treatment of risks includes qualitative and quantitative analysis, response planning and risk monitoring and controlling. The qualitative analysis of risks is all about “prioritizing risks for further analysis or action by assessing and combining their probability of occurrence and impact” (Project Management Body of Knowledge: PMBOK@Guide fourth edition). The output of this process is the risk register updates. While risks are identified in a jumble, the “perform qualitative risk analysis “categorizes risks into high, moderate and low risks. While the high priority risks move either to the “perform quantitative risks analysis process” or “plan risk response process”, the low priority risks are put on the watchlist for continued monitoring.

In the real world, most of the risks on the watchlist are forgotten, in drawers, as the project manager focuses on high priority risks. Read the Complete Article

A Risk Management Implementation

A Risk Management Implementation
By Gary Hamilton, Gareth Byatt, and Jeff Hodgkinson

As program or project managers, we have our hands full with the day-to-day management of our initiatives, and it is difficult enough to keep a lid on all the tactical actions that are taking place, let alone plan for the future. Nonetheless, we all know that planning is a key element to success. Most successful program or project managers are effective because they simultaneously balance the immediate challenges and demands facing them with future needs, opportunities and risk-avoidance. In particular, they are able to do so because they identify and communicate these elements at the right levels throughout the organization. How do successful program and project managers remain successful in their day-to-day work while spending only the minimum amount of effort directed towards long term ends?

The focus of this article is a specific risk management strategy which we believe is simple to implement and can directly help to improve one’s ability to identify, manage, and effectively communicate risks. Read the Complete Article