Dr David Hillson PMI Fellow, HonFAPM, FIRM

The Risk Doctor Partnershp


Mindfulness has its roots in Eastern religion, although it is also used therapeutically to treat a variety of psychological conditions (including anxiety, depression and stress), as well as in coaching to encourage excellence in healthy people. Used properly, mindfulness can also make our risk management more effective.

Being mindful means bringing your complete attention to your current experience on a moment-to-moment basis, being aware of everything in your surroundings, acknowledging what is there and accepting it as valid. So how can this help us to manage risk better?

Mindfulness can be particularly useful in improving our identification of risks, by making us more aware of the full range of potential risk sources. These include:

  • Ourselves – we are often blind to the risks that we bring with us to our businesses and projects. Being self-aware will help us to identify those actions and attitudes that create uncertainty, as well as exposing risky biases and behaviours. Similarly mindfulness can help us find internally-generated risks that arise from within our own teams and organisations, as a result of policies and practices as well as ethos and culture.
  • Others – it is important to be aware of the people we are working with, understanding their motivations and moods, ambitions and attitudes. Every business or project has a large number of different stakeholders who can either generate risk or help us to address it. We need to know who is in our stakeholder network and understand how they might affect what we are trying to achieve.
  • Environment – many risks arise from the situation in which we are operating. This includes our physical surroundings as well as less tangible elements of the context. What do you see and hear around you? And what do you sense or feel? Which of these things create uncertainty?


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About the Author

Dr. David Hillsonflag-ukDr. David Hillson

The Risk Doctor Partnership

Dr David Hillson CMgr FRSA FIRM FCMI HonFAPM PMI-Fellow is The Risk Doctor (www.risk-doctor.com).  As an international risk consultant, David is recognised as a leading thinker and expert practitioner in risk management. He consults, writes and speaks widely on the topic and he has made several innovative contributions to the field. David’s motto is “Understand profoundly so you can explain simply”, ensuring that his work represents both sound thinking and practical application.  

David Hillson has over 25 years’ experience in risk consulting and he has worked in more than 40 countries, providing support to clients in every major industry sector, including construction, mining, telecommunications, pharmaceutical, financial services, transport, fast-moving consumer goods, energy, IT, defence and government. David’s input includes strategic direction to organisations facing major risk challenges, as well as tactical advice on achieving value and competitive advantage from effectively managing risk.

David’s contributions to the risk discipline over many years have been recognised by a range of awards, including “Risk Personality of the Year” in 2010-11. He received both the PMI Fellow award and the PMI Distinguished Contribution Award from the Project Management Institute (PMI®) for his work in developing risk management. He is also an Honorary Fellow of the UK Association for Project Management (APM), where he has actively led risk developments for nearly 20 years.  David Hillson is an active Fellow of the Institute of Risk Management (IRM), and he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) to contribute to its Risk Commission. He is also a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and a Member of the Institute of Directors (IOD).

Dr Hillson can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works previously published in the PM World Journal by Dr David Hillson, visit his author showcase at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/dr-david-hillson/