From the five-point plan to the elevator pitch, Sara Benwell gets the essential tips on how to build engagement through risk workshops from risk expert and founder of GOAT Risk Solutions, Danny Wong

Why should I create and deliver risk workshops?

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Danny Wong, founder of GOAT Risk Solutions

Risk workshops are hugely important in that you are engaging with the most important stakeholders, which tend to be the influential leaders; and will be the risk owners in the organisation.

Risk workshops always provide a great opportunity to do training, to allow risk owners to exchange information, and can help risk managers with managing expectations as well.

You’ll be surprised how infrequently different silos within a company talk to each other about their worries, risks and challenges. They rarely communicate to each other about their performance.

I’ve been in a client organisation where I conduct CEO and executive team level quarterly risk management updates and meetings. They are an hour and a half, and for that client they said this is the only and best forum for the senior executives to exchange information and converse about the important business issues.

But I struggle to get people interested in my risk workshop. Where am I going wrong?

There could be any number of issues that affect stakeholder engagement with risk.

It is essential to keep it simple. Focus the discussion on the business, be sure to look at the business holistically and from outside-in. Gain agreement on accountability and be clear about next steps.

Leave out the risk jargon. Speak to attendees in a simple language, focus on their risks (not the process) and how risk management affects their performance/operations/people/reputation. And try to give them something they haven’t seen before

What’s your five-point plan for how I can make my risk workshop as appealing as possible?

  1. Meet with executive sponsor to manage expectations
  2. Plan the logistics, room and date so the key stakeholders are available and comfortable
  3. Communicate expectations early for attendees, giving time for pre-work/read if applicable
  4. Balance of workshop time should be on the business
  5. Clear accountability, next steps and expectations

Training logo revised

The essential ERM toolkit for risk managers - training programme

Through direct engagement with hundreds of risk professionals and senior executives, we know that many businesses struggle to have meaningful and value-adding risk discussions particularly when engaging with senior executives and at Board level. The risk profession is still falling short in terms of culture, value and impact on decision-making.

This course has been designed to take you through a journey to discover why traditional risk frameworks and methods fall short and how to implement a practical and data-led approach to risk that engages with the c-suite and drives decision-making.

The course builds on risk management fundamentals and will guide you through how to implement a practical and data-led approach to risk that engages with the c-suite and drives decision-making.

The course includes four modules, including:

  • Rethinking risk management frameworks: how to create a risk management framework that resonates with senior executives
  • Build and lead effective risk workshops that target senior executives
  • How to use data to build an impactful narrative in risk discussion
  • How to use risk appetite to drive business value


WHEN: Wednesday 25 September, 9:00-17:00
WHERE: 52 Horseferry Rd, Westminster, London SW1P 2AF

To view the full training programme agenda, click here.

To register for the course, click here.

What’s my elevator pitch for articulating the value of risk management and stakeholders’ role in risk management (and why they should attend my risk workshop)?

Risk is the one factor that can turn a good year, outcome, project or decision into a bad one. This workshop will give you what you need to know and a chance to share your concerns and hear about the worries of your peers.

Tell me one thing I’ll learn about risk culture from your training course that I won’t get anywhere else?

In the training course we can walk you through the entire process of preparation, communication and engagement, delivery and follow-up.

The messaging at workshops, of course, is directly linked with the framework which we will go through first. It’ll also teach you to deliver risk culture using the GOAT’s ETCHED framework. Normally, I would go to a client organisation starting with the buyer, and then take it upwards to the senior executives and the board.

Then, what I ask them to buy into is ETCHED, which is:

  • Empowerment
  • Transparency
  • Challenge the status quo
  • Holistic thinking
  • Embedded risk management
  • Data-led approach

Most of these are common sense attributes that are easy to say, easy to nod your head to, but actually very hard to apply in practice. Because when people look at transparency, for instance, organisations might say ‘we don’t have that culture of transparency’ or with a data-led approach, they might think: ‘we actually don’t have a lot of data’.

But that’s what I want them to strive towards. And by doing that – even if you don’t have formal processes or methodologies – if an organisation can deliver these guiding principles, they’ll be doing good risk management!