2.2 – Assess willingness to take risks
Why is this important?
In a network organization, development is influenced by whether the network is vulnerable or elastic. Is there a willingness to take risk by investing and making oneself (temporarily) vulnerable? In vulnerable networks, participants are highly dependent on each other and can easily fall victim to domino effects. This means that anything that happens in one node of the network will dramatically affect other parts of the network, or the entire network. High risks may be connected to financing, and radical innovations and entrepreneurship, as when creating new enterprises. Therefore, a network should develop its relations to investors and the entrepreneurial community in addition to government and academia, as suggested by MIT Reap 6.
An elastic network will often change while focusing on a challenge, but the network will return to its original form after addressing the challenge. This is what many organizations have experienced. They will start a project in order to change something, frequently with external funding. However, when the project is over, there is little left of it – the participants return to what they used to do.
A risk analysis tells us something about how robust the network is. This tool may be used to find the actual position of the network, and the desired position, in order to discover what may be done to move in the right direction.