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Adopting Strategic Risk Management into your Organizational Culture – and into your Next Strategic Plan

" A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."
John A. Shedd


Risk management once focused predominantly on financial risks. Important, to be sure. However, there are more opportunities to address risk within your organization. One of these areas is strategic risk, which can impact all areas of your company. When you adopt a comprehensive, organizational focus on strategic risk, you move from a defensive and reactive position to one that is focused on engaging with your team members and the future (Natale, Poppensieker and Thun, 2022).

Addressing strategic risk also helps to foster a culture of organizational resiliency, remove departmental silos and promote a dynamic, honest and open environment. This can have a positive impact on operations and supply chains, technology, and organizational challenges. This can also strengthen your organizational reputation amongst your numerous stakeholders, and business-model resilience. This resilience can then develop into an important competitive advantage (Natale et al., 2022).

Many organizations will undertake a new Strategic Plan in the New Year. Your strategic plan must account for strategic risk in order to be successful. Strategic risk can present multiple complications and interfere with positive outcomes for your organization. Identifying and managing strategic risk is an essential part of business strategy. By gauging strategic risks in a holistic and collaborative company-wide way, your organizational leadership will have the knowledge to allocate resources in the most efficient way (Maia and Chaves, 2016).

Risk can be difficult to discuss in group settings. This can be due to our natural tendencies to overestimate our abilities, underestimate our challenges, and also because of our own biases (Kaplan and Mikes, 2012). Woodland Strategies, a professional consulting firm in Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN has the experience and expertise to help your organization integrate a comprehensive model to integrate risk management into the strategic planning process. We can assist you as you;

  • Consider and openly discuss risk to best inform and design your overall strategy,
  • Identify, measure and validate strategic risks,
  • Select possible methods to offset risk,
  • Increase the chances of successful strategic implementation, and
  • Review and monitor strategic risks.

According to Kaplan and Mikes (2012), when we consider managing risk in general, it can be grouped into three possible categories including preventable or internal risks, strategy risks and external risks – or those beyond our control. Addressing overall strategic risk within your organization as a whole can have a very positive impact on your team, your organization, and your future. Get started today!

Damaso Maia, I.R., Machado Chaves, G.M. Integration of Risk Management into Strategic Planning: A New Comprehensive Approach. 2016 Enterprise Risk Management Symposium. Arlington, VA. Society of Actuaries. April 6-8, 2016. Kaplan, R., S., Mikes, A. Managing Risks: A New Framework. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved online October 3, 2023. https://hbr.org/2012/06/managing-risks-a-new-framework June 2012. Natale, A., Poppensieker, T. and Thun, M. From risk management to strategic resilience. McKinsey & Company. Retrieved online October 3, 2023. https://www.mckinsey.com/capabilities/risk-and- resilience/our-insights/from-risk-management-to-strategic-resilience March 9, 2022.

This article or any other promotional material(s) from Woodland Strategies, Inc. is in no way intended to be a comprehensive plan.

Please note all markets, circumstances, and results vary. Any strategic plan or marketing initiatives must follow all State and Federal laws and regulations, accordingly.

Please contact us directly for a complete assessment and plan for your individual organizational needs.

Ten Steps to a Successful Strategic Plan

Strategic planning is a significant undertaking. It requires energy, creativity, time and money. Your resources are important and limited. Get what you want! This is what we do at Woodland Strategies. Here are a few tips as you consider your upcoming planning project.

Choosing the Right Consultant

Consultants can provide valuable service and offer an objective perspective to assist organizations and team members in a variety of areas. Woodland Strategies, a business consulting firm in Minneapolis, MN, offers an assortment of consultancy services including Strategic Planning, Marketing Strategy, Development and Fundraising Strategy, and also Leadership Coaching.

How long does a typical strategic planning process take?

This is a question we are regularly asked at Woodland Strategies. Typically, a full strategic planning process can take up to six to eight months, depending on how in-depth the organizational planning team wants to take things.Your messaging – your values, mission and vision statements – can, and should, last between eight and twelve weeks. This is really the most fundamental part of your plan. It should never be rushed.

Succession Planning for Your Nonprofit Board

Leadership transitions within organizations can be anticipated or be quite sudden. Transitions may be due to a personal change for a board member or staff, or they may be the result of a thoughtful and long-term decision to make a change. If you are looking to keep your nonprofit sustainable, you will want to be sure that you have a written succession plan ready to go.