At De-RISK we have been in several situations over the years where, following our initial SDA, the chances of hitting the key milestones are shown to be very low and often 0%. This news can often be a shock to the parties involved so it’s vital to find a good way to deliver a difficult message which results in a favourable outcome for client and consultant, despite the initial unease at the results.
Ultimately, consultants and advisers must operate with integrity. Hopefully with careful presentation and solutions, both the project and relationship can be saved. If, however, the client fails to see or accept the analysis, and if the right thing to do is to walk away, then do it. At De-RISK we know the value of the SDA process is in the rigour of the methodology and the clarity of the outcomes. “More than once, I have had to gracefully depart only for the client to realise that “we” were right and has called us back in some months later” says Keith Baxter, De-RISK MD.
Setting the parameters for the risk assessment methodology in advance can prepare the road for a bumpy ride, in terms of managing expectations. In the case of tough messages, particularly when the client has been an integral part of developing the plan, accept the results without compromise and think alongside the likely reception. With some planning and expectation, you can manage the message appropriately. Don’t forget that the value of your job, and the benefit of methodologies like SDA, is to scientifically calculate the likelihood of success, without emotion, so that appropriate actions can be put in place resulting in the success that everyone is looking for.