Essay on Security Risk Management
Number of words: 1689
Communication is an integral component of all aspects of human life. It is the medium through which economic, political and social information gets transmitted from one individual to another. In this regard, communication can be regarded as the process of conveying information from one person to another or a group (Adler et al.,10). Communication serves to educate, teach, entertain, and warn among other multiple purposes. Because of this, all organisations should always strive to have effective and efficient communication processes. In the domain of security and risk management, the importance of effective communication cannot get understated. It is the process through which identified risks get communicated to other parties. It is also the process through which people get equipped with the necessary information and knowledge to deal with the identified risks (Adler 12). This essay presents a robust discussion of risk communication and its importance to the security manager.
Risk communication principally refers to the sharing of information aiming at influencing risk perception, enhancing risk understanding and equipping individuals with the needed knowledge and information to correctly act when responding to the identified risk (Lundgren et al., 13). The entire risk management process is premised on effective communication. Risk communication is both a continuous and multi directional process of risk management. It is a continuous part of the risk management process since it aims at ensuring that every individual that is or will be affected by the identified risk has the needed information at the time he/she needs it.
An effective risk management process is enshrined on strong and effective communication. In most cases, as a part of their risk management process, organisations usually ensure that they maintain effective communication between the various stakeholders. Some of the stakeholders include customers, analysts, partners and team members (Scholderer and Veflen 62). Like other aspects of the risk management process, the risk communication process is enshrined in some fundamental questions. In particular, which risk information needs to get communicated? Between which parties should the risk information get communicated? Besides, how can the specific risk information get communicated effectively?
The information that should get communicated in most cases includes factual information on given threats and hazards, risk perceptions, the results of risk assessments, consequences of an identified risk and other alternative courses of action. Nonetheless, it is imperative to note that not all parties should have similar information (Scholderer and Veflen, 63). Notably, members of the public will not necessarily need information about the results of risk assessments or the steps taken to manage both internal and external risks faced by a given organisation. However, they will need information on how to evacuate from a given area, which has been identified as a potential storm/hurricane/flood impact area. Risk communication also gets done through multiple channels. For instance, before anticipated floods or hurricane, the information will generally be conveyed through the government’s official communication platforms such as the website. However, after the event, the information will generally get conveyed by the government’s spokespersons.
Risk communication can further get broken down into external and internal communication. It can also be divided into pre-decision and post-decision. Similarly, it can get divided into pre-event and post-event. Ordinarily, the parties involved in the risk communication process will always change based on the context. Some common examples of risk communication include television ads, brochures, warning systems, public addresses and alerts, reports, town hall meetings, meetings at work, memos, and emails among others (Hopkin 85).
It is imperative to note that risk communication is not merely identifying a given risk and conveying the information to the target audience. Risk communication process entails identifying the given risk and conveying the information on the particular risk to the target audience in a comprehensible manner. It also includes preparing the audience in advance before conveying the risk information to them (Hopkin 87). Therefore, risk communication that fails to consider the needs of the audience generally gets considered as incomplete.
External Risk Communication
External risk communication refers to the communication between risk officials in a given organisation with other external partners and stakeholders; for instance, governmental agencies. External risk communication seeks at gaining a wholesome understanding of the risk perceptions (Aven 8). Some of the external partners and stakeholders usually possess an extensive and superior understanding of given risks and concomitant processes.
Internal Risk Communication
Internal risk communication refers to the communication between decision makers and analysts within a given organisation on risk management processes.
Considerations for risk communication
There are several considerations that one needs to consider in risk communication, notwithstanding whether the target audience is either internal or external. Firstly, one has to ensure that he/she plans for the risk communication process. Arguably, this is because risk communication should be a core component of the risk management process and not just an afterthought (Aven 17). Although the information needs for the various audiences vary throughout the risk management cycle; one has to ensure that risk information is available for all the stakeholders throughout the whole cycle. Besides, the plans for communication in the risk management process have to factor for two-way communication.
One also has to ensure that he/she builds trust. This is because previous communication efforts greatly affect future communication. How other parties respond to risk communication majorly depends on how past messages got conveyed to them and how they received them (Sadgrove 21). Therefore, where an individual wants to convey new information that contradicts information that got shared previously, he/she has to acknowledge the changes and then explain the current situation.
Additionally, in risk communication, one has to consider his/her target audience. This is because risk communication should be tailored to the needs of the audience. Therefore, this means that one has to use language that is relevant to the audience (Sadgrove 20). Notably, one should make accommodations for other individuals who speak other languages.
Additionally, one has to ensure that the risk communication process is both transparent and clear. Clear communication essentially means communicating in a manner that is both simple and understandable. Therefore, this means that in the risk communication process, one should avoid jargon and scientific information unless it is very critical for the audience.
Importance of Risk communication to the security manager
Risk communication is important to the security manager since it assists him/her in identifying the risk that his/her organisation faces. Arguably, there cannot be any risk communication if a company fails to identify the various risks to its operations (Sadgrove 25). Once a company is aware of the risks that it faces, it can take the necessary measures to avoid the risks. Besides, once a risk manager is aware of the risks that his/her company, he/she can take the necessary steps to minimise the impacts of the risk on the operations of a business. Further, once the security manager has identified the risks to his/her organisation, he/she can analyse them in detail and develop logical models for addressing the risks.
Additionally, risk communication helps a security manager to protect the resources of his/her company. Besides, identifying risk, risk communication allows security managers to convey the identified risk information to other concerned stakeholders. As a result, organisations can prioritise dealing with the risks (Sadgrove 28). This saves the company from the losses it would have incurred if it did not take necessary measures to either prevent the risk occurring or minimise the impacts of the given risks. It also allows security managers to work on other tasks that are geared at enhancing their company’s performances.
Risk communication also assists security managers to discover reusable information. This can be attributed to the fact that the risk communication process is a collaborative task that involves most parties. The information that usually gets garnered after the risk identification process can later be used in developing risk management plans. Such plans may be used in addressing other risks that the organisation will face in the future.
Risk communication also results in the enhancement of a given company’s brand. When the security manager continually communicates the risk information to its stakeholders, ` this conveys a positive image of the company. Notably, the workers will feel that they are working for an enterprise that is not only resourceful but also responsible (Glendon and Clarke 50; Hillson and Murray-Webster 44). Similarly, the customers will feel that they are transacting with an enterprise that is not only professional and proactive. Overall, this demonstrates to the stakeholder that a company is reputable. It also illustrates that the security manager is concerned about the image and appeal of his/her company.
To sum it up, the paper has presented a comprehensive analysis of risk communication and its importance to the risk manager. Notably, the essay has shown that risk communication transcends identifying risk information and conveying it to the relevant stakeholders. It also involves communicating the risk information to the stakeholders in a comprehensible manner. Besides, the paper has shown that risk communication is essential to managers since it allows them to identify risks and discover reusable information. It also allows them to save their company’s time and physical resources.
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