Assessing red flags

A check­list for sniff­ing out and address­ing risks and red flags

If prob­lems are pop­ping up unex­pect­ed­ly around your company’s projects, prod­ucts, and peo­ple, those, my friends, are red flags. Miss­ing them is tan­ta­mount to an acid bath for your orga­ni­za­tion. Don’t wor­ry, we’ve got you covered.

Red flag and risk assessment checklist

Here is a short risk checklist you can modify for your own projects:

  • List the red flags you observe (consider using a system like |> to denote them)
  • List the risks that the red flags denote
  • Determine if the risk is internal or external (e.g., project team vs client or exec stakeholders)
  • Determine if the risk affects timeline, budget, scope, people, and/or business
  • Determine which parts of your project are impacted (e.g., design, development, content)
  • Determine the risk impact (hint: if you notice red flags, the risk is likely to happen)
  • Determine the risk probability
  • Create a red flag/risk matrix (sample)
  • Develop a risk mitigation strategy for the likely risks (short term response)
  • Develop a contingency plan for unlikely or less serious risks (long term plan)
  • Notify any relevant stakeholders (be sure to involve them in the mitigation plan and contingency making process)
  • Update plan when new risks are noticed

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