There are two parts to identifying and understanding whether something is a risk to your organization. The first part is to understand what might happen in the world and within your organization that might cause an adverse result. The second part is to understand the resilience of your organization to the adversity.
Consider the situation of New Orleans. For the Big Easy to be properly prepared for a major hurricane, they need to have both a realistic view of what sorts of hurricanes could hit the city AND they needed to be realistic about the resilience of their city to the impact of the hurricane.
Riskviews has featured the Plural Rationalities view that there are four different views of risk many times. In addition to the view of risk, resiliency can follow the pattern of four different points of view. In fact, it may well be a combination of the view of resiliency and the view of risk that makes up the four risk paradigms.
Conservators believe that the world is risky AND they are not very resilient.
Maximizers believe that the world is low risk AND that they are very resilient.
Managers believe that the world is moderately risky AND that they can be appropriately resilient if the work at it and apply the correct expertise.
Pragmatists believe that they do not know how risky that the world is and they also cannot tell whether they will be sufficiently prepared.
Consider the residents of the Atchafalaya Spillway area where the water from the flooding Mississippi River was diverted by the Army Corps of Engineers. Some of those folks fled immediately when asked to evacuate. They doubted that they had the resilience to face the flood. Others stayed put because they had always survived floods before and they felt that their resilience was fine. A few folks stayed and built up their own defenses. You may have seen the TV footage of homes in their own little islands of recently added sandbags. The Pragmatists may have been in any one of those three groups but for entirely different reasons.)
The feeling of resilience comes from experience – from the feedback that people get from their experiences. And it helps to form their current approach to risk.
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