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Jun 2012

2012 lectures: From ruin to resilience

John Hurrell, chief executive of Airmic, gave a powerful lecture, entitled ‘From ruin to resilience’, in the heart of the city.

Around 70 leading professionals attended the event, which was held at the Willis Building in London, and continued our successful Tomorrow’s Value series with respected think tank Tomorrow’s Company.

Against a backdrop of high-profile risk management failures across the global economy, John discussed how risk and related issues must be at the core of business strategy, and can be the difference between business success and failure. Board risk blindness, lack of board experience, and lack of non-executive director control must be addressed in order to help businesses succeed.

When things go wrong, a risk is almost always known by someone in the organisation, but all too often what is known isn't communicated, understood or acted upon. This does little to build the ‘resilience’ required to avoid ‘ruin’.

John outlined the hugely significant findings of Airmic's research, Roads to Ruin, undertaken by Cass Business School. Read the executive briefing online.

This compelling research investigated the causes and consequences of 18 of the most catastrophic failures in risk management over the last decade. It showed that the firms who were involved experienced the same seven key points of failure to various degrees, which can be broadly described as failing to manage the 'risk management glass ceiling'.

John’s lecture was followed by an absorbing business panel, featuring Richard Sykes, governance risk and compliance leader, PwC; James Duckworth, director, Control Risks; Julia Graham, chief risk officer, DLA Piper; and Charles Tilley, chief executive, CIMA.

Charles Tilley closed the event by asserting that organisations must avoid over-sophisticated risk systems that prevent the board from identifying and dealing with the most crucial risks, and instead structure risk around the business model.

Join the discussion on Twitter using the hashtag #TomorrowsValue.


Keynote speech: John Hurrell

Panel Q&A session

Closing address: Charles Tilley FCMA, CGMA, CIMA chief executive