Perhaps you’d say risk is the chance or danger that something is going to happen to cause you to lose something or fail to achieve some goal?

WIkipedia defines Risk as the potential of gaining or losing something of value.   But did you know there are two types of Risk—the risks you take and the risks you face?  With the former you have control and with the latter you are at the mercy of the world.


Here are a few Risks We Take each day – We make a conscientious effort to get out bed and shower, we might choose to eat breakfast, and drive our car to work--stopping at all traffic signals.  We are in control!

The Risk We Face are caused by uncontrollable events; for example, a power outage could cause our alarm and hot water heater to fail so that we wake up late and have to take a cold shower. When driving to work, even when if we stopped at a traffic signal someone could rear end us. And, the breakfast skippers among us might not pick-up the error the consultants made on slide 2 of the big presentation. We are not completely in control to prevent these events, but we can take steps to lessen impacts of these events (battery backups, desk snacks, and car insurance).

Now, think about your alma mater, your company, or your local government.  Name five risks you’d like one of your organizations to take and five risks you’d like them to face as they pursue their objectives.  Next time, we will show you how to properly measure and handle those different types risks  to best achieve their objectives.  Below are mine.


Risks you take

  • Sponsor a charity
  • Mentor a child
  • Relocate with your organization
  • Apply new technology
  • Promote work place safety

Risks you face

  • New government regulations
  • Mandatory company relocation
  • Merge with another organization
  • Retirement policy change
  • Innovative product development




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