Tag Archives: risk

Finding leaders fit to lead is a question of perception and specifics

30 Apr

How we perceive leaders, and their characteristics, is how we will formulate a leadership role and function. It is seldom based on facts, in the main it’s more of a personal flavour we can or want to associate with, perception is seldom informed, and it is a condition, of conditioning. We see leaders the way they are portrayed in the media, by comrades, equals, friends, family, piers, and because of their status.

Therefore; developing leaders is no easy task. As we first have to change people’s perception about what leadership is, it is not a charismatic outlook, a fairy-tale, or a comic book hero. Leaders are fallible, mortal, and have a history each. This binds them, good and bad.

Leadership therefore is not a condition, a state of existence that is effective at a certain point of its life cycle, in performing specific and required functions, of whatever nature required well. No, leadership is a chosen action that is circumstantial, a leader does not lead daily, or every waken moment, no, it’s by choice. We make a conscious decision to act the part, and take the lead, and direct, command, and organise. It takes very little talent, but it does stake a lot of is confidence that comes from experience.

It never ends there either. Looking for the right raw material and trying to mould someone into a leader has proven to be a hit and miss affair. As leadership requirements differ from day-to-day, from situation to situation, and so I can site many instances. The crux of this matter is; it is never just that one thing, or two, or three or even a list, which will guarantee a good profile of leadership ability ever.

Psychology, science and academia even military tradition have also given it a go, and still, there is no one size fits all.

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Ideology can become a sources of Risk

11 Nov

Risks are not just about identifying events that, when triggered, could cause problems, even all the defects, and operational issues like none performance, shortage or scarcity of some resource, all the obvious things we were taught that create risk, yes still valid, but now there is more to consider when talking risk. The SWOT analysis is just not good enough; we require some sociological scanning…

The environmental scan is the second tool to use with RISK analysis; for today deeper and unseen aspects prevail, that also impact our risk factors and profile; it could start with any underlying philosophy being promoted, even our way of thinking could be contaminated, anything that rides the strategic train of thought with us, and then takes over at some point from rational and tips us towards the emotional, or abstract side of reasoning. Aha, so risk is not just measurable, tangible, foreseeable, and obvious, it’s also hidden in our metal make-up…and very much so.

Hence, risk identification should also include the people involved in our teams, profile them; for their bias, fears and then most important their ideology.  Yes, the very way we are trying to solve a problem, is directly linked to how we are positioned, toward our environment, how we understand it, operate in it, and control it, is strongly influence by our ideology, things we believe in. This aspect could become the actual risk, sometimes only later on, and even a threat to the entire scheme, greater that the initial problems we foresee now… itself.

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Index of posts on this blog – Strategic Management

2 Jul

Security as part of Emergency and Disaster Management – Planning an Event

28 Jun

This is just an introduction to some of the in-depth aspects that need work when dealing with events. Many veterans in the event management industry have now realized and will agree, that with events we need plans tailor-made, templates just don’t cut it.

Next, how we focus, will determine where we will focus. Focus is the main issue here, and it should be on good and proper planning. Planning alone is one step in the right direction if done right, the next is the handling (management and co-ordination) of events, our plans should not become the catalyst for disaster itself, and neither should our ultra-ego influence our management styles and practices.

The fact of the matter is. You get plans, and then you get plans; I have seen some “plans” and PLANS in my life time, most was just a pure thumb suck exercise, not even worth looking at, a complete waste of paper and time. Some have only submitted a one pager for an event that will be hosting/ catering for as many as 30 000 people.

Furthermore; this just shows how people are chosen willy-nilly to perform tasks that they have no business performing. We need the right people for this job. Very few business men can themselves plan, let alone plan strategic, and have the skills, knowhow and ability to deliver workable and solid safety and security plans. This role is best suited for Military, Police, Disaster Management and Security personnel. Apart from the obvious event planning, and all the detail, the bells and whistles, the scope and focus should include a platform from which to operate. Then this highlights the importance of security at events, especially in today’s day and age where; terrorism, vandalism, crime, and criminals are fast on the increase. Then it goes without saying, we also require a much greater emphasis on proper safety and security, right from the word go, any planning should be done in tandem with a security oversight, it’s of paramount importance. Continue reading

Combining Management Principles with Disaster Management Aspects

9 May

Stop wasting time by creating mountains of elaborate planning, do it right, or just don’t do it at all.

Far too many disaster management plans are drawn up daily just for the sake of having one, because it is somehow “required”. Even more are drawn up costing thousands and are never implemented. The reason for this is they could not interface, or connect with structures and systems existing. 

What is a Disaster Management Plan?

First off, what is a disaster? Here is a short definition; A disaster is classified as being either natural or man-made. That has impact on a developed population’s infrastructure, housing, farms, or livelihood that destroys most of it, and caused extensive loss of human life, or drastically changes the landscape, environment, or economy of a region…

Now we can ask, what is a disaster management plan then? In simple terms; a disaster management plan encompasses more than just disaster readiness and planning aspects, it is very specific. Both in terms of being;
·         Industry specific,
·         Event specific,
·         Country specific and even
·         Language specific
·         Format specific…
It has characteristics of the environment it dictates to.  It connects via an identified or perceived threat or risk that it will, could or should address, if it transpires, alternatively, its preventative and mitigating.

Whenever contemplating preparing for “disasters”; in any form, be it small or large, then the way to deal with planning is to look at the composition of emergency and disaster management entities, and services existing in your area, and having a look at their planning first. Then only decide whether your contemplated plan will fit, or even add value. Any plan needs to fit in with both any local government, provincial, and even national governments plans, as well as their organs/ departments of state, in order to add value, or to even matter, and moreover make sense – it needs to close a gap, not open one. Other NGO’s  and industry stakeholders, and watch dogs are also custodians, like the Civil Aviation Authority etc… Continue reading

A Standard Operating Procedure for Strategic, Security, Emergency, Disaster & Event Management Planning.

23 Apr

A Standard Operating Procedure for Strategic, Security, Emergency, Disaster & Event Management Planning..

A Standard Operating Procedure for Strategic, Security, Emergency, Disaster & Event Management Planning.

22 Apr

STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE FOR STRATEGIC

Emergency & Disaster, Event Management Planning.

CONFIDENTIAL

No portion of this document may be used, sold or otherwise reproduced or disseminated for any other purpose as what it was initially intended for, no person has any rights to this document, and it is not considered a public document, no one else will be considered a rightful user. All rights to this document in terms of the Protection of Information Act, 1982 83

________________________________________________

 

This article is aimed at those who want to arrange a huge event, and need some more than just the basic info on how to and what to do… This article will serve as a practical guide, for those who will concern themselves more with the security, emergency and disaster management aspects of any event.

I have found that by only following a textbook formula one can’t ensure continued safety, and readiness, at any type of event and for a simple reason: in any dynamic situation, performance is fundamentally relative, and becomes absolute at the point where we have no competition. Then, we dance to our own tune, and at our own pace. What am I getting at? With events you have one of every discipline, and each stick to its own. No two entities compete directly, and therefore they don’t have to perform at their peak. In fact, lasting performance of exceptional quality is largely a mental picture, a perception; a statistical anomaly. The simple fact is that no formula can guarantee continued sustainable performance, at least not in a competitive business environment where everything has a life cycle.

So, when you hire a security company, by referral, and they come highly recommended, don’t rest on your laurels either, and just assume they will perform same or better that what was expected. Things change fast; key people resign, owners sell companies, or they just get cheaper labour, or less qualified, especially when their popularity grow, and they become over stretched by the demand. This applies to all your potential service providers, especially in the events industry, those that you will be dealing with during any event need some credit. Credentials are a must then, and referrals say something more, specifically the latest, they say in this industry you are only as good as your very last performance…and it stays true.

The belief that strategic choices only made in the boardroom will directly affect the quality of a business concept, especially at grassroots level, and then the world if it is properly implemented. Where its success equates directly to the results of great planning, especially project or either strategic, is totally flawed.  Any plan is only as good as the first few minutes it was written in, and then immediately implemented.

As more and more time lapse,  between the conception and implementation time frames, then naturally, the more time you put between planning and execution, the more the variables change, and keep changing. Thus, planning never the less remains an indispensible part of  any great endeavor, and an ongoing effort, either way it remains indispensable. The results of planning will only be reflecting the degree of precision and good decision making, and then only how effective it was executed under conditions of ambiguity that tends to change the shape of things in the heat of battle, at the instance where we go over to action, and execution, it is only then that we really see the true factors that impact on our plan, those things just outside our control, only when we hit the ground running, do we feel what we are running on, the grass, or stones for the first time. Change and influences ( both internal as well as external) will always, certainly, be the factors we cannot gauge with perfect certainty, if one thing changes, then everything normally follows on, and then it tends to change the overall plans perspective.

Strategic event management; is described as organised chaos in motion; choice is inevitably an exercise in decision making under conditions of uncertainty, of which the objective is not to find workable solutions only, and to guaranteed success, but rather to improve the odds of making it all the way without serious incidents, accidents, emergencies, and disasters,  through a thoughtful consideration of factors and influences that could mitigate them, or render then nun and void. Strategic event management and planning,  should never just be focused on gain, and rewards, the big compensation. Where event management companies focus only on reward, and rewarding executives for being lucky, and getting an event done, and pulling it off, without having had a fraction of what the law, requires, and otherwise stipulated, then as we all know somehow luck tends to run out at the most crucial point. The people die… Then only do we see the true value and necessity for security, emergency and disaster management and mitigation strategies.  We need something different added to our strategic focus, especially where people in large numbers are concerned.  Then we need a structure, some STANDARD OPPERATING PROCEDURES, for all to see, and follow during EVENTS.

Many countries have legislation in place, however more still doesn’t, that cover events from cradle to grave. Still, even with legislative compliance in place, you can never be sure that every event will comply 100%, and the first place they cut corners is on safety, security, and disaster mitigation. It is still just a bare minimum standard of security.  The very uniqueness and nature of events makes it very unpredictable, even at the best of times. The problem with this is, we deal with people, and aspects like liquor use, drugs, guns, crime, political issues, could be the catalyst for something better and bigger to follow. The other aspects are unseen; adverse weather, exposed electricity, structural failures, fire, arson, gas explosions, lightning, flood water, sinkholes, etc…

Therefore, we need to opt for self organisation and true professionalism…when planning and designing major events…

Firstly we need to familiarise ourselves with the industry and their acronyms. Continue reading

Strategy in Peril

4 Apr

In short what is STRATEGY really?

Ask around, hay friend! What is STRATEGY exactly?

Nine out of ten times someone will have some sort of an idea…very few will peg the mark…and be able to give you the detail of it, this brings strategy into peril. People need to know and understand that everything they do, eat, hear, smell, taste and say daily is because of some form of STRATEGY.

The history of strategy is the history of our world, and the future of man.

We are and were born hunters and gatherers first – afterwards we just become; all self-centred, and aim to exploit our habitat and those in it, with the use of strategy and scheming, to our advantage. It’s all programmed and hot wired into our psyche, to manipulate and use emotional blackmail, we tend to get what we want from a very young age by using these approaches; it’s all forms of strategy we practice.

Strategy exists in order for us, to get what we want, so why don’t we know what it means to be strategic?

We are at risk of losing all the benefits and application of real life strategy, if we do not clarify and quantify how it’s to be seen, used, understood, referred to and handled.

What is Strategy in the true sense of the word or by nature?

We need to make sure that everyone understands not its implicit meaning ;( implying what we think we understand it to be, all in general terms, with only limited insight).

NO! It’s part of life skills…We want and need people to understand and relate to strategy from its explicit meaning; (what it really implies as a matter of fact, and practices, to be representative of this, this is what strategy truly is, and can do.)

Moving from the Implicit; where our answer would be, it means something like planning…

To Explicit; by being able to give a simple definition; 1*Strategy is the 2*art of 3*planning and 4*directing large 5*scale 6*movements and 7*operations of 8*business nature.  Furthermore we should also be able to explain the words that describe the complexity, to create connections for ourselves and others; then we will be able to describe elements that make up strategy. By starting with the basic description of strategy and what it implies.

  1. Strategy; is best described as an approach; a way of doing something’s, by utilising tactics and initiative.

 

Tactics imply;

  1. The ability to use something/ anything to your advantage, from very simple to very complex, it can also take on any form, like; policy, procedures, devices, mashines, skill, knowhow – anything that you can use to give you a power, or leverage. Then we get more complex form of tactics; with manoeuvre, technology…anything that will give you an advantage, or make you faster, or keep you in power, or give you the ability to take and lead by initiative, coercion, enslavement, mediation, the list is open ended. Then lastly War; from infantry to nuclear bombs; it all sorts under this aspect of tactics.
  2. Initiative on the other hand is; the thinking behind all of this, how we structure and organise our selves is called initiative, also entrepreneurship is included. This includes the design of something, also the planning, organising, orchestrating, politicising, and campaigning for an event to take place. It is the cognitive; the thinking part, the thinking about thinking, the critical thing and communication of these ideas. As well as the rallying of agents and means, and the selling of these concepts. How we connect resources, Knowledge and effort to deliver on a goal, this is using our initiative, being labelled as being very resourceful, and cunning, stems from being able to use all of these mentioned elements to add value and then deliver a result.
  3. 2. Art; implies; having certain skills, talents and or ability to do things with people, or perform actions with resources and create something… if you can do it consistently then you have mastered the Art of something, you then become proficient at what you do, then you are labelled an artist.
  4. 3. Planning relates to; the amount of preparation that was set aside beforehand, to think about ways and means of aching goals. This action can be done alone or as groups, or even segmented, where sections are planned and the eventually joined to become the master plan, or blue print. Project management functions mainly on planning. It also looks at forecasting, and scheduling so that we could say with some amount of certainty how much it will cost, what is needed, and how long it will take etc. Other terms used here are; prioritizing, systems, design, risk, budget, influence, techniques, goals, vision, mission, objective, review, action plan, strategic review, closing the gap, swot analysis, analyzing data, etc…
  5. 4. Directing; much like a conductor directs and orchestra, in the same fashion we need to direct all forms of planning into one act. This is leadership, management network, and supervision functions, as well as structure, systems, policy and procedure, all of it has one aim. To deliver the results contemplated in the time, and with the exact specifications in mind.
  6. 5. Scale; refers to the size of the project and the amount of effort required.
  7. 6. Movement; is simple enough; this implies that we need actions, and acts to make them happen, some will be specific, other vague… yet all co-ordinated and calculated. Things won’t happen if we don’t act.
  8. 7. Operations; this is where it all happens on the ground, where we plant the seed, where we do what we had contemplated with effort and time is spent doing  it, performing the acts contemplated…
  9. 8. Business; is supply and demand; in exchange for money…

I hope to some extent; that we can now have 9 out of ten people that can tell me what strategy is- If not, then strategy is still in peril.

Read more in my new book Strategic Management, The Radical Revolutionary Strategic Management Matrix for Predators by Reinier Geel, now available at Trafford;

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?Book=339320


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