Resources

Everything I Know About Risk Management I Learned by Teaching Risk Management

By Melanie Lockwood Herman “Whenever we want a far-reaching impact, teaching others to teach can be a high-leverage strategy.”   I’ve just finished reading Effortless by Greg McKeown. In Chapter 12, “Lift,” I was struck by a subhead that reads, “When You Learn to Teach, You Teach Yourself to Learn.” McKeown goes on to explain … Continued

Stop Preaching to the Choir

By Melanie Lockwood Herman During a recent Risk Assessment, one of the senior leaders I spoke to was rather blunt in expressing doubt about the tangible benefits and ultimate value that a risk assessment would bring to the organization. Although I was grateful for his candor, his comments left me wondering whether his view might … Continued

A Risk Management Journey with Miranda Hora

Miranda Hora is Senior Manager of Global Operations at Helen Keller International (HKI), a global development organization at work in 20 countries to save and improve the sight and lives of the world’s vulnerable by combating the causes and consequences of blindness, poor health, and malnutrition. Miranda manages the global operations systems that support the … Continued

Don’t be Dispassionate: How to Use Emotional Impulses to Make Better Decisions – Full Article

By Glenn Mott “Heuristic / you risked it.”  —Hank Lazer Recently, I had an opportunity to read a special issue of the Harvard Business Review called “The Brain Science Behind Business”—a compilation of previously published articles about neuroscience. Reading these articles got me thinking about the role of heuristics in risk management. Heuristics refers to … Continued

Use Design Thinking to Find Creative Solutions to Worrisome Risks

By Katharine Nesslage “Some of our important choices have a timeline. If we delay a decision, the opportunity is gone forever. Sometimes our doubts keep us from making a choice that involves change. Thus, an opportunity may be missed.”– James E. Faust As disruption—rapid change in current behavior with no time to oppose it—becomes the … Continued

The (Vivid) Red Car Syndrome

By Melanie Lockwood Herman This week I’ve been reading Rick Nason and Leslie Fleming’s book, Essentials of Enterprise Risk Management. Nason and Fleming take the reader on an enjoyable and insightful tour of basic ERM concepts using a pull-no-punches style that is refreshing for a book on this topic. I especially like the sections of … Continued

What Kind of Risk Champion Are You?

This week we’ve been discussing the traits and tendencies of the risk leaders we encounter at NRMC. We see positives across a wide spectrum of approaches and philosophies and get especially excited when leaders tell us they are forging new paths to strengthen risk management in their organizations. Since so much about risk can be … Continued

The Power of Anecdote: True Stories of Nonprofit Risk from the Front Lines

By Christy Grano While attending the Risk Summit, it occurred to me that a powerful benefit of the conference was the opportunity to exchange true stories and tough lessons learned on the frontlines of nonprofit service. After hearing several leaders describe how their organizations narrowly escaped significant losses or recovered from a loss, I began … Continued

Scorched Middle Earth: Banishing The Department of No

by Melanie Lockwood Herman As fans of high fantasy fiction know first-hand, Middle-earth is the fictional setting for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, the most widely-read books from English writer J. R. R. Tolkien. According to Wikipedia, “Middle-earth has also become a short-hand to refer to the legendarium and Tolkien’s fictional take … Continued

Talking Cures: Authentic Risk Management

By Melanie Lockwood Herman Inspiration for RISK eNews often comes from the work we do answering day-to-day RISK HELP questions from our Affiliate Members. It also comes from the more cerebral work of helping our consulting clients build durable risk management frameworks, resources, and plans. RISK HELP is almost-always delivered through one or more brief … Continued

Risk Assessment Perspectives: Re-Lens with Three Approaches

By Melanie Lockwood Herman For some, an updated prescription from an optometrist is the perfect reason to pick out a new pair of frames. For me, a new prescription led me to purchase vintage frames, which required finding a company offering a “re-lens” service. Many retailers with optical departments are risk averse: refusing to put … Continued

Restructuring Risk Roles

By Erin Gloeckner Throughout the sector, more and more nonprofits are formally assigning risk management responsibility to an individual or team focused on risk, usually with risk or related words in their job titles. Many NRMC clients succeed by assigning an existing team to wear the risk hat and champion risk management initiatives, without recognizing … Continued

Selfless Leadership: When to Leave Fingerprints

By Melanie Lockwood Herman If you’re a fan of crime dramas, you’re well aware that recovering fingerprints—the impressions left by the friction ridges (raised portion of the epidermis) of a human finger—is often an important part of a crime scene investigation. And when the identity associated with the fingerprints is revealed, it doesn’t always match … Continued

Risk Management Advice: Smarts from the Streets

This week’s RISK eNEWS features street smart words of wisdom from risk management leaders who serve in nonprofits, or who serve clients across the nonprofit sector. Find inspiration in this sage risk management advice from your peers, who take bold risks every day! NRMC: Are you a risk taker, or risk averse? Why?   Mike … Continued

Managing Risk in a World of Change: Turn and Face the Strange

By Melanie Lockwood Herman Three of the questions we often ask during NRMC Risk Assessments or ERM Engagements are: What is the most significant, recent change in your organization? What disruptive changes are going on now? If we were to return a year from now, what would be decidedly different? As you might have guessed, … Continued

Risk Management Leaders Must be Unstoppably Optimistic

“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.” – Colin Powell By Melanie Lockwood Herman In his article, “How to Lead in 2018,” Fast Company editor Robert Safian beckons his readers to embrace optimistic leadership by staring “unblinkingly at this time of chaos and dig into the difficult work of building a better tomorrow.” Across our work … Continued

Infographic: Five Favorite Reads for Risk Professionals

AHT Insurance Partners with NRMC as Corporate Sustainer The NRMC team proudly announces that AHT Insurance has joined our family of Corporate Sustainers. We are grateful for the AHT team’s commitment to provide year-round support for NRMC’s mission. AHT previously sponsored our annual conference, the Risk Summit, and will now continue to do so, while supporting NRMC’s … Continued

Risk Leadership Resources for Nonprofit Risk Champions

November 30, 2017 Explore this RISK eNewsletter filled with risk leadership resources What Star Trek Taught Me about Risk Leadership There’s not exactly a Starfleet Academy for nonprofit risk professionals, like in the beloved television and film series, Star Trek. So how will you know when you reach the status of a commissioned officer, ready … Continued

The Illusion of Teams

By Eric Henkel Teams are often viewed as a possible panacea for complex organizational challenges. However, forming and deploying teams to address perennial problems sometimes creates a mirage; leaders believe they see something that isn’t really there. Effective teams are more often an illusion than a reality and many nonprofit leaders are content to believe … Continued

Dream Big: 10 Lessons Learned from Skydiving

By Christine Smith On Monday, I had the opportunity to jump out of a plane from 10,000 feet in the air at 120 miles per hour. Yes, that’s right, I went skydiving! If you’ve seen my bio on the NRMC website, you would know that it was an item on my bucket list. To say … Continued

Risk Categorization: Learning from the Risk Leadership Certificate Program

By Erin Gloeckner Our Risk Leadership Certificate Program (RLCP) is underway. With our RLCP cohort, we’ve enjoyed productive generative discussions about core competencies for risk professionals, including risk assessment, risk culture, risk function design, and insurance program oversight. With each conversation, we challenged our understanding of risk management best practices, like risk categorization. Prior to … Continued

New Risk Benchmarking App & Infographic: 5 Riveting Reads for Risk Champions

  The Nonprofit Risk Management Center team is pleased to share our new, free resource: the Risk Benchmarking App. This web application allows nonprofit leaders to compare their organizations’s risk practices to those of peer organizations. The Risk Benchmarking App uses five commonly asked questions to compare nonprofit risk management practices. We plan to add … Continued

Don’t Get Stuck in a Rut, Trust Your Gut

By Melanie Lockwood Herman “You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.” – Alan Alda In last week’s Risk eNews (“Embrace Your Leaky Brain to Conquer the Unknown“) I shared a lesson from the book … Continued

Embrace Your Leaky Brain to Conquer the Unknown

By Melanie Lockwood Herman This week I was dismayed to learn about the damaging effects and destructive force of a leaky faucet. For the past two weeks I have noticed–but repeatedly ignored–a strangely stiff faucet handle and minor leak in one of my sinks at home. Now it’s time to pay the piper, or in … Continued

What Will You Learn This Year?

By Melanie Lockwood Herman You’ll never know everything about anything, especially something you love.” – Julia Child While perusing a past issue of The Economist, I encountered an unfamiliar term: deep learning. According to “Now We’re Talking,” (The Economist, January 7, 2017), deep learning is “an artificial-intelligence technique in which a software system is trained using … Continued

Risk Champions: What’s in a Name?

The risk champion in a nonprofit may be called Risk Manager, CFO, Chief Risk Officer, Director of Special Projects or even CEO. Despite the varying titles, the clear trend in the nonprofit sector is to designate a point person to champion the design and implementation of best-in-class risk management. This webinar explores the role of … Continued

We Are the Champions, My Friends: Risk Champion Q&A

By Erin Gloeckner Risk management is a team sport. A team approach encourages the consideration of alternative perspectives on risk, as well as integration of aligned risk management practices throughout your organization. Still, it helps to have an experienced risk management thought leader on board; this ‘risk champion’ can inspire buy-in from the whole team … Continued

The Nitty Gritty of a Risk Committee

By Melanie Lockwood Herman “Let’s form a committee!” is the frequent battle cry of nonprofit leaders facing a complex problem for which there are no obvious, immediate or cheap solutions. When more than one brain is needed to ponder a perplexing problem, forming a committee seems to be a good first step. But are risk … Continued