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Analytical skills > Analytical skills - Pg. 133

Risk Practitioner Competencies Health and Safety is now so out of control that I find it nearly impossible to do my job. On Top Gear, we refer to the BBC health and safety people as Prohibition Officers from the PPD or the Programme Prevention Department. 133 Analytical skills Analytical skills range widely and require strategic and logical thinking. On occa- sions, when problem solving is involved then creative lateral thinking is also a key requirement of the risk practitioner. Many risk practitioners are involved in quantification of risks, either as part of a Basel II capital requirement calculation or as part of an analysis to determine the appropriate level of insurance that is required. However, analytical skills are not always mathematically based and well-developed problem-solving skills will be of considerable benefit to a typical risk practitioner. In addition to analytical skills, research skills are often a requirement of many risk practitioners. The ability to locate and process information quickly and efficiently will be of considerable benefit to a risk practitioner. Risk practitioners are often required to evaluate a great deal of information about a specific topic, find the common thread within that information and present the findings in a concise and logical manner. This will almost invariably be a requirement when the risk practitioner is drafting a written report or preparing a training course or presentation. The benefit of being skilled in analytical processes is at its greatest when the risk practitioner is seeking to facilitate a risk assessment workshop. It is often the case in risk assessment workshops that the delegates will have different views of the level of risk presented by a specific situation. A skilful facilitator is able to listen to these conflicting views and identify the underlying presumptions that have resulted in the different conclusions. Having identified the presumptions and assumptions, the skilled facilitator will then be able to challenge the different parties with the reasons for their differing opinions. This will be the most successful way of coming to a common view. Analytical skill involves the ability to understand, challenge and articulate pro- blems and concepts and thereby make decisions based on the available information. These skills include the ability to demonstrate and apply logical thinking to the gathering and analysis of information, as well as the designing and testing of solutions to problems. The output from analytical skills is the ability to formulate appropriate alternative solutions and challenge the alternatives so as to develop the most logical plan of action. Problem solving and decision making are important skills for business life. Problem solving often involves decision making and decision making is especially important for risk management. There are processes and techniques to improve decision making and the quality of decisions. Decision making is more natural to certain personalities, so these people should focus more on improving the quality of their decisions. People who are less natural decision makers are often able to make quality assessments, but may need to be more decisive in acting upon the decisions made. Problem solving and decision making are closely linked and each requires creativity in identifying and developing options. Brainstorming techniques are particularly useful