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Risk Approaches: How to Respond to Risks

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As a project manager, the risk assessment is one of the most important pieces of project documentation. In the risk assessment, you will also determine what risk approach to take. There are four alternatives to responding to risks in project management: Avoiding, Assuming, Reducing, Transferring.

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The four alternatives a project organization can adopt regarding how to address and respond to risks are:

• Avoiding - "Avoiding risks, or loss prevention, involves taking steps to prevent a loss from occurring" (Gale Encyclopedia, 2013, para 4). These are the strategies that a project manager will do in the planning phase of a project to identify any known risks at the beginning of a project in an effort to avoid them both at that time and later on. For example, a pharmaceutical drug company may choose not to market or release a particular drug because of the known side effects and their impact on people.

An implication for this approach may be that some projects are very limited if avoidance is the only risk mitigation strategy. I would imagine that several projects never make it off the ground if the only strategy was avoidance.

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