Proactive vs Reactive Support Strategies: Why both are best for Business

AUGUST, 2022

Understanding Proactive vs Reactive Business Strategy concepts is essential when it comes to effective Risk Management in your organisation.

A risk management plan’s fundamental goal is to minimise or effectively eradicate the potential threats to a business, be it across an Operations, Marketing, or IT department.

It is not as black and white as implementing either a Proactive or Reactive strategy, but rather how both strategies can coexist within an organisation’s risk management plan.

There are many valid cases for utilising one or the other, but if the two are successfully merged together, not only does it minimise risk, but it can identify inconsistencies in an organisation that will advance the business once they are patched.

Why Risk Management is Important

There are absolutely no cons to risk management if you have the correct strategy.

Benefits of a successful risk management strategy include:

  • Prevention of Losses

  • Decreased magnitude of losses.

  • Resources are utilised more effectively to combat risk.

  • Reduced number of reactive situations.

  • Reassures stakeholders, partners, and clients that their data, investments, etc is safeguarded.

  • Identify and promptly grasp new opportunities.

  • Promote continuous improvement.

What is Proactive Strategy?

Proactive risk management is a concept that aims to reduce the odds of any accident or malicious attack occurring in the future by identifying each business’ situation or processes to determine potential threats.

Enabling a proactive approach also involves correctly identifying drivers of risks to grasp the key issue along with assessing the likelihood and impact in order to prioritise risks, which makes creating a contingency plan a lot easier.

It is creative food for thought for those looking to protect their organisation’s valuables and is currently the most common method of risk management strategy because of its effectiveness.

Why choose a Proactive Strategy?

The old adage of ‘prevention is better than the cure’ rings true with regards to a proactive strategy, and this can apply to an entire host of occupations who possess a risk management plan.

You’d argue that fire prevention is much more preferable than actual firefighting. This also applies to business, where retailers (etc) can safeguard their valuables from threats online by utilising a proactive risk management method, rather than manage the threat once it’s reared its ugly head.

What is Reactive Strategy?

A Reactive risk strategy is a response based approach, which is solely dependent on past incident evaluation and audit based findings. It begins once an ‘incident’ occurs, or once problems have been detected following on from an audit.

The incident is investigated, and measures are implemented to avoid similar events attacking the business in the future.

Why choose a Reactive Strategy?

It saves company time that is poured in to the research and analysis of risk mitigation, and forces a company’s hand to adapt in certain situations, which can be risky.

Reactive concepts also save a lot of time and energy that a proactive approach would take. It is also argued that since we do not possess the gift of foresight, a situation that a proactive strategy has not prepared for may arise, in which case the strategy is rendered surplus to requirements.

However, at Sherwen Studios, we offer 24/7 assistance to ‘put out the fires’ as soon as they occur. We can keep your business moving with minimal customer inconvenience and promise to have you back up and running within one hour as part of our contracted 15 minute response time guarantee.

Further measures will be taken to reduce the negative impact the incident could potentially have on your business’ profitability and sustainability.

Proactive vs. Reactive: Which Strategy is Best?

Regardless of your business model, a proactive risk mitigation approach is customarily the defence method of choice when it comes to security.

A proactive risk strategy generally consists of focusing efforts on mitigating the risk of pre-emptive threat occurrences. This involves devising plans to protect critical assets via educating the business about the who, what, where, why, and how threats can potentially expose their valuable, sensitive assets.

By profiling each asset, businesses can also easily prioritise, plan and tackle incidents accordingly should they threaten to compromise their assets.

A Reactive risk management strategy possesses the inability to efficiently manage or eliminate threats

If action is solely taken after an incident occurs, a business may have already undergone a substantial amount of irreparable damage.

There is the small argument that too many resources and time can be put into planning for something that may never happen, but logic would dictate that by preemptively seeking out issues, you’re effectively extinguishing the flames before the fire has started.

The application of a proactive risk approach is so beneficial in such universal circumstances, it’s hard to see why people and businesses alike would neglect to employ any other strategy, especially one that would see themselves stuck in a continuous state of damage control.

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Risk management strategies should be proactively implemented, rather than driven by disastrous events. Experts claim that reactive approaches such as responding to the results of an audit or following an incident are not effective means of enterprise risk management, since it does not mitigate future risks and frequently leaves organisations playing catch up.

Reactive risk management puts businesses on the back foot and makes IT departments look like costly liabilities rather than invaluable assets.

The ability to see risks and opportunities simultaneously helps to develop flexible businesses that can manage value protection & creation asynchronously. Developing the ability and resources to recognise such opportunities requires a proactive risk management concept and is crucial in aiding businesses to better manage and benefit from inevitable risks.

Here at Sherwen Studios, we implement a complete hybrid solution of the two support strategies. We'll be first in line to tackle any unforeseen threats, whilst simultaneously identifying & augmenting your website's defences. Take advantage of our services and minimise the risk of your website being exposed, and how we can maximise its full potential. Email us