In the 21st century, one characteristic that undoubtedly describes the society we have lived in is the constant change. A dynamic, rapid society where transformation is continuous does not transmit the values of a stable, slow and traditional society. No one knows what will happen tomorrow and that is always accompanied by great uncertainties.
The most graphic example is the computer environment, probably paradigm of this acceleration of change, but in recent decades it has been spreading to almost all spheres of our daily life, suffering a definitive exponential blow with the emergence of the internet.
The Changing society is increasingly demanding competitiveness both in the personal and in the workplace.
It also seems logical to think that those people who
- adapt better to new environments,
- develop good social skills,
- have the ability to recycle and learn new concepts (not only in the workplace but also in the personal).
By moving regularly in changing environments, focusing on new challenges, meeting new people, we can say that “risk” is a constant in our lives.
If no one were to tell us what is a risk, the only way to face new challenges would be risk exposure.
“The best way to predict the future is to create it” – Peter Drucker –
What Is Risk Intelligence?
In this current context, a term has emerged, “Risk Intelligence”, which has been addressed by different authors, in our view, Dylan Evans who best clarifies the term with his work “Risk Intelligence” (2012).
Evans defines it as” a kind of intelligence that addresses risk and uncertainty, and leads to a correct estimation of probabilities.”
Why Is It Important To Develop Risk Intelligence?
People, who have developed “Risk Intelligence”, know how to predict that what will be after the next curve, and also correctly estimate the different options that can be found. People with high-risk intelligence can not only estimate their percentage of occurrence but also provide for each possible scenario a correct profit/loss balance.
Now if, in an environment of uncertainty, diffuse and undefined context, it is known that the human being is bad at making estimates. However, there are people who tend to make better, tighter estimates, being those who have high-risk intelligence.
These people, in experiencing the risks, have had to develop creativity, a great capacity for resolution and the development of strategies to positively resolve risk situations.
These people have developed the reflection in deciding properly when the information is not complete. It is an inherent part of the change as long as we adapt to the new scenario and it is likely that when we have all the variables controlled, the rules of the game have already changed.
Dylan Evans notes that risk intelligence is, in fact, a different form of intelligence and does not go hand in hand with the traditional IQ.
“We often see in the market how very brilliant people make very stupid risk decisions, ” he says.
The subtitle of Evans ‘book is” How to Live with Uncertainty”. That is, when the data we have are scarce, when the sample is small, in new fields not yet explored, when it is forced to give an immediate response without time to properly analyze the information, the intelligence of risk makes a difference.
Risk intelligence also carries emotional intelligence, in the sense of being fully aware of our emotions and how they are influencing us in making our estimates and subsequent decision-making.
Regarding the business environment, an example of what has been said are the strategic plans that used to be in many five-year cases, but at present, it is difficult for them to exceed three years, being many of two and even annual, precisely because of the current environment so changing and therefore makes the medium-long term plans very difficult.
For this reason, the fact that the directive is capable of an accurate estimate and has a high-risk intelligence is increasingly necessary and demanded by companies. In addition, those who know how to anticipate the new scenario better will have a qualitative advantage over the competition.
Therefore, there is an incipient need to manage uncertainty and be able to adapt to new scenarios both at work and in staff.
People who do not handle change well and uncertainty situations accumulate high levels of stress during the process, which can influence professional performance, affect health and emotional stability and increase the likelihood of personal crises.
While people with greater flexibility toward change and uncertainty tend to thrive on personal projects, businesses or challenges.