Tips for becoming a successful and effective Chief Risk Officer

The role of the Chief Risk Officer (CRO) is as challenging as it is varied. Depending on your industry, the role of the CRO can change dramatically, as the risks and potential risks change. What is constant is the need for a CRO to be able to manage, assess and mitigate risks to business in an ongoing and effective way. As businesses grow and technology advances, risks adapt and change. No matter the industry, you can rest assured the risks will grow and having an effective CRO is absolutely crucial.  There are a number of key attributes required to becoming a success. With these tips, you will be well on your way to becoming the most effective CRO you can be.


Keep up to date


As we’ve mentioned above, one of the biggest challenges of risk assessment is the very nature of risk. As one risk is mitigated, so appears another. As technology advances, giving us extraordinary tools for running business, so too do the risks of said technology. As your business grows, you become more exposed. The biggest mistake you can make with your business is becoming complacent. Your CRO must be vigilant and up to date at all times.

This requires acute knowledge of your industry and risks. It also requires an advanced understanding of the general business risks and management techniques facing your business today. A great starting point is networking with other CROs at events such as the Konnect Learning inaugural Chief Risk Officer Summit in March 2017.

Understand your industry and the market

Your industry will face a plethora of customised risk, specific to the kind of service you provide. Knowing your industry is absolutely vital in being able to successfully understand the breadth of risk facing your business. Industry training and networking is the key. Spend time with other business operators in your industry and get a feel for the individualised challenges you face. If you are looking for industry customised events to be involved in, get in touch with training organisations such as Konnect Learning, to investigate the best available networking opportunities for you.


Ensure your business acumen aligns with the needs of the business


This is something all CROs must learn and understand. A successful CRO needs to understand the processes and aims of the business as well as the potential risks. A fine balance needs to be struck at every corner, as risk needs to be mitigated and managed while minimising the disruption of the business.


Ensuring that your CRO has strong and effective business acumen can be key in managing that tightrope-esque balancing act. All Things Admin is a fantastic resource for business administrators and they have a fantastic article for those looking to develop their business acumen.


Develop your communication skills


You may understand your industry and the wider industry of risk assessment, but if you do not contain the communication skills, your knowledge will be for nought. Every business professional should consistently work on and build their communication skills. Invest in communication across your business and you are investing in the prosperity of your business. Understand emotional intelligence and develop your ability to communicate.

Hone your ability to lead and influence


Affecting change can be tough when you are faced with a business full of naysayers. The fact is managing many risks will often get in the way of business and understanding how to balance risk and business will only get you so far. Sometimes the CRO will be responsible for making the hard choices, the choices that may initially look like a financial burden. The CRO may be responsible for creating walls instead of tearing them down. A CRO needs to have the ability to make change with the enthusiastic backing of the wider business. This requires leadership. Be confident in your ability to lead and influence others, and if you are not confident, learn.

Whatever the risk, ensure you protect yourself with a successful and effective Chief Risk Officer.

10 Top Tips for fostering a positive company culture

Research is increasingly revealing some scary statistics when it comes to employee satisfaction. Employees aren’t engaged, trust in our leaders is at an all-time low, and employees are on the constant lookout for something new, exciting and more appealing. The fact is the happier your employees, the more productive, loyal and committed they will become.

You cannot underestimate the importance of a positive company culture. Get that right, and so much of your business will fall into place. Follow these top tips to create a more effective culture in your workplace.

Communication is key

We are all starting to realise the value in realising effective communication in the workplace. A tight communication strategy and an open-door policy can make strides in changing the way your employees see both the leadership team and the company. If you have five minutes, we highly recommend taking a moment to view these hilarious videos about communication in the workplace.

Be the right kind of leader

There are some pretty uninspiring examples of rubbish leadership out there – quick to put people down and crush morale. Striving for power and superficial congratulation is the quickest route to becoming a crappy leader. Be an authentic, genuine, effective and trustworthy leader, and your team will follow you to the ends of the world and back.

Know your vision and communicate your goals

When your team understands your wider vision, they are more likely to be invested in it. Create achievable goalposts for all employees and create a direct link back to your wider company vision. This way your team is always connected to your higher overall goal.

Do everything in your power to engage your team

Employee engagement is one of the most important tools in maintaining satisfaction, loyalty and productivity. Don’t be another statistic. Don’t make the same mistakes as so many companies. Your culture is entirely reliant on whether or not your team is engaged with it. Read Dale Carnegie’s 50 Employee Engagement Ideas and Tips for some hands-on advice.

Whatever decisions you make – be transparent with your team

We often talk about the value of transparency in our blog posts, because you really cannot underestimate how valuable it can be. When someone feels trusted they are more likely to trust in return. Your team will be more powerful, more loyal and more engaged when you involve them in the process.

Celebrate when things go well

We are so often quick to criticise when things don’t go to plan – looking for a face to blame in a bid to ensure it doesn’t happen again. What about the wins? Your team has achieved their goals and instead of celebrating, it’s business as usual. Celebrating those wins with your team is crucial to a positive culture and there are numerous ongoing advantages.

Foster health and wellbeing

Employee health and wellbeing are not just buzzwords to repeat in your annual report. If you want to keep a solid, satisfied, productive workforce, you absolutely must actively support their mental and physical health. Following these simple tips, are just some of the ways you can improve your workplace health and wellbeing.

Promote teamwork and camaraderie

As we’ve mentioned your company culture is entirely dependent on the investment of your team. Without them, it’s lip-service for the board. Your team needs to feel that they are part of something – they need to feel like a team. Work on building a feeling of camaraderie amongst your employees by implementing changes such as the recommendations in this Small Business article.

Inject a little bit of humour

We all love to laugh, it makes us happy and builds positivity. In the workplace, there are real and tangible advantages of injecting a little bit of humour into your workplace. Don’t be afraid to throw a little fun into your work. If it is consistent with your wider goals, it’ll only serve to improve your company culture overall. Watch this hysterical Twitter video on workplace culture for a little inspiration.

Support training and development

Nothing shows you’re invested in your team more than when you actively invest in their development. The wise words of Richard Branson are timeless and so true. Create an effective learning and development program, and you’ll reap the rewards.

Culture is a fickle thing. If you get it wrong, you can forever scar your reputation and business overall. Register for the Konnect Learning Fostering Company Culture Masterclass and you are on the path to business success.