Enhancing project outcomes through better risk taking

I have really enjoyed reading the latest article from Hans Læssøe, “Five reasons projects fail – and what risk managers need do about them”,


He steps back a bit from the day to day project management processes to more holistically describe the 5 biggest reasons why projects fail.

I particularly liked this article because for many years I have felt that risk management as taught in PM training doesn’t adequately cover the real world scenarios a project manager will come to face.

His following quote illustrates my/this perspective well I feel:

Whatever actions are taken on managing risks are focused on managing risks – without any considerations as to how that may impact the overall project or business performance

He continues on by explaining that risk identification “tends to be based on tunnel vision, not considering the ‘business system’ of whatever the project addresses.”

I couldn’t agree more. And this very reason, along with my own tunnel vision and the problems which came as a newly qualified PM, is EXACTLY the reason why I developed the Risk Assessment Tool for IT Projects

Hans’ finishes off strongly, outlining the value add that good risk management can contribute to the business outcome, saying:

…we take mitigating actions as deliberate means to enhance expected project/business performance, not as a means to manage risks

Great article and well worth a read.

Frank Ray

Ask any project manager about the key to their success, and they will say that delivering a project is often more like a "dark art" or by chance, than a predictable science.

They may also say that a project going 'off the rails' was one of the most stressful things they have professionally experienced. And unfortunately, it’s all too common.

We developed our free project management tools to help.
Risk Assessment Tool for IT Projects
Why IT Projects Fail

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