Project Management and Risks (Q & A)

  1. What is a risk?

A risk is the possibility of a problem occurring on the project that threatens the project’s successful outcome in some way or poses an opportunity the project team should investigate.

  1. Name some of the planning documents or elements of the planning documents that you can use to start identifying them.

Some documents you can use to help start identifying risks are the WBS, the task list, the list of project constraints, and critical success factors. 

  1. Name three of the most common project problems.

The three most common project risks are associated with the triple constraints: time, budget, and scope.

  1. Name five types of participants who should assist in the identification process.

Participants in the risk-identification process should consist of the project manager, key project team members, key stakeholders, subject-matter experts, and people with previous experience on similar projects.

  1. Which risk-identification technique places all the participants together in the same room with a facilitator, has each participant record risks on sticky notes, one per round, and then posts the notes to a whiteboard?

The Nominal Group technique is like brainstorming in that all the participants are together in the same room, but they write risks, one at a time, on sticky notes and give them to the facilitator to post. When all the risks are identified, the group then ranks the risks.

  1. What are three other techniques, in addition to the Nominal Group technique, that you can use to identify risks?

Some techniques you can use to help with the risk-identification process are brainstorming, the Delphi technique, interviewing, using checklists, and researching historical information.

  1. Briefly describe a probability impact matrix and the purpose it serves.

A probability impact matrix is a way to assign probability values and impact values to each risk event to determine an overall risk score. The overall risk score is used to determine which risks need risk response plans. 

  1. What is risk tolerance?

Risk tolerance is the amount of risk that an individual or an organization is willing to tolerate in exchange for the benefits of partaking in the activity.

  1. Name the seven risk response strategies.

The seven risk response strategies are accepting, avoiding, transferring, mitigating, exploit, share, and enhance.

  1. What are contingency reserves used for?

Contingency reserves are used to handle risks that have minimal impacts, such as secondary risks or residual risks, or for risks that are not addressed through any of the other strategies such as avoiding, transferring, mitigating, sharing, enhancing, or exploiting.

Learn more about project risk management by enrolling in one of our project or business analysis courses.  
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