Happy Boxing Day!

By Melanie Lockwood Herman

In the spirit of Boxing Day, the holiday celebrated in nations of the British Commonwealth and in the American Commonwealth of Massachusetts, this edition of the RISK eNews contains a “boxed set” of resources.

Reflection Questions for 2018

During multiple consulting engagements this year my conversations with clients focused on the importance of engaging in conversations about risk as the most important aspect of risk management. Contrary to common belief, risk systems and frameworks are of secondary importance: Candid conversations trump tired risk process diagrams every time. In the spirit of daring to question, here are my favorite prompts for fruitful dialog:

  • Challenge assumptions: How many things has our team been dead wrong about?
  • Embrace surprise: How were we completely surprised—but in a good way—this year? What unfortunate events or circumstances caught us by surprise? What were the downsides of our best surprises, and the silver linings of the worst?
  • Celebrate learning: What was the most important lesson we learned this year? The most painful?
  • Resolve to do differently: What risk event or activity truly inspired us to ‘do differently next year? How will we be and do different next time?
  • Stay future focused: What elements of a successful risk culture will we focus on next year? And what indicators should we look for as signals that our risk culture is starting to change for the better or worse? (for inspiration, see Chapter 10 of World-Class Risk Management for Nonprofits)
  • Get the board on board: In what ways did our board contribute to our shared understanding of our risk landscape? How might we engage the board in fruitful risk conversations next year?
  • Hone your skill set: Are we skilled at considering and preparing for various futures and contingencies? What three things do we need to adopt or improve upon next year to build the skills our mission needs and deserves?

2019 Webinars

We’re excited about the brand-new line-up of monthly Affiliate Member webinars and hope you are as well. We narrowed a long list of intriguing risk themes into our line-up of twelve timely topics. Each program will be on a Wednesday afternoon at 2 pm Eastern. Traveling or otherwise engaged on the day we deliver the “live” program? Not to worry. Every webinar will be recorded and available as an MP4 file within minutes of its completion. In addition, handouts will be available prior to the delivery of each program. The NRMC series of webinars is ideal for risk leaders looking to refresh their knowledge, explore the nuances of familiar challenges, or present ready-made training for peers. These programs are available exclusively to NRMC Affiliate Members. Not a member? Sign up today!

January 9 – Developing and Maintaining an Effective CEO-Board Partnership

February 13 – Managing Risk and Reward in a Multigenerational Workforce

March 13 – Running Successful Risk Workshops

April 10 – Cyber Liability Insurance: What You Need to Know

May 8 – Five Low-Cost Ways to Inspire Driver Safety

June 6 – Risk Reporting

July 10 – Managing Risk in Tech Vendor Selection

August 14 – Five Low-Tech Ways to Anticipate and Manage Active Threats

September 11 – Crisis Communications

October 16 – Understanding and Managing Risk Culture

November 6 – Managing Talent Acquisition Risk

December 11 – Risk Management: It’s FUNdamental

Best of the RISK eNews

A hearty thank you to everyone who wrote to me this year to say that you enjoyed a particular issue of our weekly newsletter. Your comments, suggestions, insights and thank you notes kept our team thinking and writing. Here’s my list of 10 favorite pieces written by our team, including my colleagues Erin Gloeckner, Delia Jones, Christy Grano and Glenn Mott. If you haven’t had a chance to read these—or share them with cherished colleagues—there’s no time like the present!

8 Tips for a Happy Unicorn Meeting

Person of Interest: Soliciting Insights from Staff In-The-Know

Revamp Your Risk Register

Scorched Middle Earth: Banishing the Department of No

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

A Matter of Opinion: Risk Aware Publishing Insights

Risk Management Leaders Must be Unstoppably Optimistic

Selfless Leadership: When to Leave Fingerprints

Risk Assessment Perspectives: Re-Lens with Three Approaches

Pass the Remote! The Trials, Tribulations and Triumphs of Telecommuting Teams

Melanie Lockwood Herman is Executive Director of the Nonprofit Risk Management Center. She welcomes your thoughts about risk management and awareness throughout the year, or questions about NRMC Affiliate Member and Consulting Services. Melanie can be reached at 703.777.3504 or Melanie@nonprofitrisk.org.