How User Friendly is the ISO 31000:2009 Risk Management Standard?

In a word, NOT!

Although it is written in impeccable English, it is easily understandable ONLY to someone who already knows the standard. This was clearly not the intent of the authors, but it is actually the resultant product.

A Talmudic Standard?

In fact, once you know the standard you may actually appreciate the careful wording, like one who appreciates the alliteration of good poetry. So how did intelligent people create this dichotomy? I think that the answer lies in three factors:

  • This is the first edition of the standard, not unlike the first Model T Ford. Imperfect but fantastic; loved by some – hated by others.
  • It is the product of international consensus. It’s not easy to get hundreds of individuals from 45+ countries to agree on anything.
  • A number of English speaking countries were only casually involved in its creation.

More about this in a coming post…

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