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 When identifying risks, it can sometimes feel like there are too many risks involved to successfully deliver a project’s objectives. The problem is, how do you know if you have too many risks and how should you deal with them?

There is no maximum number of risks for a project, particularly as projects vary so much in size, scope and value. The first thing you need to do is assess the size of the project. A small project may not be able to cope with a high number of risks where a larger project would not be held back. It is likely only small projects will be halted at this stage. From here, you need to grade the risks in terms of likelihood, impact and immediacy.

This will allow you to identify and concentrate on the major risks while also evaluating the overall level of risk facing the project. At this point, you can decide if the project is simply too risky or is acceptable, you may also find that it is acceptable but you need external help in the form of a specialized risk manager. You could use a risk manager just to get the risk load down to a reasonable size or hire them long term to mitigate risk throughout the project. Regardless of whether or not you decide to use external resources, once you have categorized and prioritized the risks, you need to minimize the threats and maximize the opportunities in each.

This way, you’ll be able to focus on the risks that need to be closely monitored. Using this system of grading risks, you can assess risks as and when they appear over the course of the project and make sure the level is risk is under control.
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