Which direction are you planning on taking?
- Are you expecting your risk to grow faster than your capacity to bare risk?
- Are you expecting your risk capacity to grow faster than your risk?
- Or are you planning to keep growth of your risk and your capacity in balance?
If risk is your business, then the answer to this question is one of just a few statements that make up a basic risk strategy.
RISKVIEWS calls this the Risk Trajectory. Risk Trajectory is not a permanent aspect of a businesses risk strategy. Trajectory will change unpredictably and usually not each year.
There are four factors that have the most influence on Risk Trajectory:
- Your Risk Profile – often stated in terms of the potential losses from all risks at a particular likelihood (i.e. 1 in 200 years)
- Your capacity to bare risk – often stated in terms of capital
- Your preferred level of security (may be factored directly into the return period used for Risk Profile or stated as a buffer above Risk Profile)
- The likely rewards for accepting the risks in your Risk Profile
If you have a comfortable margin between your Risk Profile and your preferred level of security, then you might accept a risk trajectory of Risk Growing Faster than Capacity.
Or if the Likely Rewards seem very good, you might be willing to accept a little less security for the higher reward.
All four of the factors that influence Risk Trajectory are constantly moving. Over time, anything other than carefully coordinated movements will result in occasional need to change trajectory. In some cases, the need to change trajectory comes from an unexpected large loss that results in an abrupt change in your capacity.
For the balanced risk and capacity trajectory, you would need to maintain a level of profit as a percentage of the Risk Profile that is on the average over time equal to the growth in Risk Profile.
For Capacity to grow faster than Risk, the profit as a percentage of the Risk Profile would be greater than the growth in Risk Profile.
For Risk to grow faster than Capacity, Risk profile growth rate would be greater than the profit as a percentage of the Risk Profile.
RISKVIEWS would guess that all this is just as easy to do as juggling four balls that are a different and somewhat unpredictably different size, shape and weight when they come down compared to when you tossed them up.