If there is any word which is used very commonly - in different spheres of life - it has to be Risk. 

We always look forward to ensuring the success of whatever we do - however small or big.

Be it being on time to watch a movie. Or purchasing that desirable thing you always wanted to possess, at a moment when the prices are just right for you. Or executing that enormously complex project.

Achieving success in these endeavors, as you had planned, is indeed good and emotionally rewarding. But is there something which can prevent you from being successful?

Well, there is something. It is Risk. 

You can come across a big traffic jam as soon as you start from home for the movie, which makes reaching on time difficult. Or you could misjudge the timing to buy the thing, only to see the prices fall a lot further, immediately after you do the purchasing. 

Or you could come across some unforeseen complex situations in the project execution which set you back on achieving the set goal by a few days, months or even years.

Henry Ford - the car mogul - once remarked - "No one can really guarantee the future. The best thing we can do is calculate the risks involved, size up our chances, estimate our ability to deal with them, and then make our plans with confidence."

So what does Ford propose??

Well, first thing - every task, every activity is bound to have some risks. Some of the will be known when you start with the endeavor. And some are unforeseen.

What is most important? Assessing and identifying the risks. Because only when you know that a risk exists, that you can make some attempt to overcome it. 

After identifying the risk, you have to estimate how that risk will influence the sucessfull execution of your activity. Will it have some minimal impact? Or will it have a huge impact - like derailing your activity itself?

Judgment of this point is very important - because it is with this assessment that you will give importance to that risk and take steps to prevent its occurrence.

What can be done to prevent this risk from occurring? Well, you have to take steps and create conditions to prevent the risk situation from arising.  

In some cases, you just cannot overcome the risks. What you can possibly do is mitigate these risks to the best of your abilities.

And lastly, what can be said about risks which are unforeseen? How do you manage risks which show up at the eleventh hour?

I would say a few things. Be alert - so that whenever they arise, they show up on your radar. And once they show up, tackle them with the same cycle - estimation of the risk and taking steps to avoid or mitigate them.

What is most important about such risks? Well, you need to tackle them with a sense of urgency. Remember one thing - Procrastination is your enemy.

And with all such risks under your fair control - what do you do next? Like Ford said, make your plans with confidence and execute them with the best of your abilities.

And become sucessfull.

And another important thing that should be kept in mind while taking actions against risk - the evaluation of The Risk Vs The Reward. Read more on this point on my old blog post.
Risks Risks Reviewed by Vyankatesh on Tuesday, February 15, 2011 Rating: 5

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