Every project has inherent risks. And if you work in a very risk averse industry or company getting a project off the ground can be an exercise in frustration as the focus is not on what you can deliver but on what might go wrong.
The traditional approach to risk, according to Gartner research director John Wheeler, is based on an insurer's mindset. Find a risk, rank it by likelihood and impact and mark it up on a heat map. If there are too many risks up in the top right corner of the map, the project looks like a high-risk activity.
Wheeler's approach is to replace the likelihood and impact axes on the heat map and replace them with value and appetite.
It's an interesting approach that might help with selling projects to the C-suite.