Back in 1998 I started working with a project management consultancy (PMProfessional) where I learned lots and made firm friends and colleagues - Peter Simon, David Hillson, Michel Thiry, Julia Johnson, Paul Naybour... to name just a few of from that era.
One of the things that used to really bemuse (and sometimes frustrate) me was the rush for a specialism. I was introduced to risk specialists, and value specialists, and I was hailed to be a quality specialist. I never quite got it because for me managing risk and quality and value is just part of management (and doing this in a project context is just part of project management). But - I bowed to the trend and joined in with the intention of becoming a specialist in a few of the boxes that had been defined.
I was reminded of this today as I was sitting on the train catching up with magazine from professional bodies of which I'm a member. I'm a Chartered Quality Professional and Member of the Institute of Risk Management.
In Quality World (April 2014) there is much anticipation of ISO9001: 2015 which is going to have a much greater focus on risk-based quality, i.e. balancing risk and reward. Of course, for me, preventive action in ISO9001: 2008 is all about risk analysis and management (what risks to quality exists and how will we managed them), but a yet greater integration of risk with quality is good.
In RMProfessional (Spring 2014), there is a great article that continues a theme I've pursued for some time about integrating risk thinking with normal managerial decision-making, but this article goes further to suggest better integration of risk with management systems, such as ISO9001: 2015.
Hurray! I've decided that I'll never beat the separation of these disciplines - the market to 'professionalise' them is too great - and there is much good done by these professional bodies. But I'll keep on pushing that for me, it's about management and sensible integration of a few basis ideas about achieving objectives and keeping variation in achieving them inside tolerable limits.