Risk in focus: Simone Savoldi

The Institute of Risk Management (IRM) talks to Simone Savoldi, CMIRM, Senior Consultant at TÜV SÜD Global Risk Consultants Italy on what working in risk is really like and what advice they would share with people looking for a career in the industry.

How did you get your job in risk?

My career started more than 20 years ago in engineering, driven by a passion to solve complex problems in multi-cultural settings. Almost by chance, I was hired by a multinational insurance company and I qualified as a risk engineer, with the aim to identify, evaluate and mitigate hazard risks that can damage critical assets and result in business disruption. I soon realised that combining critical thinking with insightful risk analyses could offer real solutions to organisations concerned with preventing incidents, limiting losses and strengthening resilience. From hazard risks, my area of expertise has grown over time to become a management discipline, incorporating elements of governance, culture and audit systems. Today, I’m senior consultant of TÜV SÜD Global Risk Consultants, the leading worldwide provider of property loss control and risk management, serving as board advisor for global industrial and manufacturing multinationals.

What’s a typical day like as a senior risk consultant?

I have a global presence with business leaders of major multinationals. I reach them via online meetings, emails, phone calls. I prefer travelling and meeting them face-to-face, although, in times of Covid, this is not always possible. I encourage adoption of internationally recognised risk frameworks to risk owners, principal actors in the insurance market and global executives. Sifting through bias generated by risk perception and cultural attitude towards risks, I talk about risk assessment to business leaders and I present how selected risk events can impact the organisation, its profitability and cash flow.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Working with people from different cultures, in multiple countries and with diverse backgrounds offer me a fantastic opportunity to talking about risk, confronted by the psychology of risk nevertheless assisting decision-makers in striking a balance between risk and reward. This consolidates the role of go-to expert for risk management.

What are the challenges?

Risk by its own definition has not yet manifested itself. Presenting the consequences of risk events and risk sources can be a real challenge, especially when dealing with low frequency / high impact risks. Risk perception is an invisible but powerful factor in every-day decisions. Risk appetite across an organisation need to become more fluent and present.

What made you decide to study the International Diploma in ERM?

The IRM’s International Diploma in ERM is a formal course of study in risk. It enriches the journey to make organizations’ more resilient. It allowed me to remain up-to-date with industry best practices. The ERM Diploma and the quality of its curricula is a point of reference for education in risk and it is internationally recognised. ERM skills allow me to apply risk management to a broad range of risks, improving organisational performance and the P&L.

How do you feel holding a qualification has helped in your career?The qualification is pivotal in highly technical manufacturing, bridging the gap between theoretical learning and practical problems through case studies, real-word assessments. I remember when I was studying risk culture on one day and having the opportunity to experience what was meant by living it the following day in my organisation.

What would you say to others about taking the qualification?

Study for the International Diploma in ERM is an investment in your future career in risk and, like all investments, it requires discipline and dedication. The Diploma will demand your utmost efforts but the outcome will shape the way you approach risk for the remaining of your career. It’s definitely worth it!

What advice can you give to others?

> To succeed in the ERM Diploma you will need to become familiar with the learning outcomes and how the learning outcome should be presented.

> “Examination command words” need to become your ‘new dictionary’.

> Find out more about risk: Take advantage of the extensive resources presented under the heading ‘further readings’. Be curious and explore them.