An interesting point you may wish to note about risk management going forward: If you were to look at surveys of C-level leaders in recent months, you may be surprised at what you’d find. According to global leaders, across every region of the world and every market sector today, the number one theme going into 2021 and the next decade is uncertainty. Given continuing effects of the global COVID-19 pandemic and coronavirus, as well as rising geopolitical and economic uncertainty, these executive leaders also point out that in coming years we can only expect to be hit with more unforeseen disruptions harder, faster, and more frequently that at any point in history.

Keeping this in mind, you may also wish to note that senior leaders in virtually every industry tell us that strategic priorities have shifted somewhat for companies hoping to get ahead in the near future. For example, top priorities are currently as follows, they tell us:

  • Developing and maximizing a global pool of talent with diverse perspectives and backgrounds
  • Fostering a culture of employee engagement and embracing a culture of continuous learning
  • Putting productivity, not process, at the heart of your operating strategy
  • Routinely daring to disrupt
  • Making a lasting commitment from the executive suite on down to driving ongoing organizational improvement


Reading the tea leaves, it tells us that right here and now – before disruption hits us yet again, and we can most afford to take risks – seems the best time for business leaders to start making a host of smart investments in all sorts of programs and initiatives that drive constant learning and growth for your enterprise. And that it’s a great time to be encouraging yourselves + your colleagues to embrace the idea of educating yourselves through a running process of trial and error that involves constantly testing out new strategies and solutions.

Because what we found in our research is that in uncertain times, the irony of risk management is you’ve got to take more risks, not fewer if you want to get ahead in business – but these risks have to come in the form of small, smart, cost-effective bets designed as ongoing learn experiments that can help you quickly gain deeper insights into the shape of changing market landscapes and make better and more informed choices as you steadily and surely get smarter.