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Secrets of Risk Management with Data professionals; Babatunde Raimi and Lolade Hamzat

Vasid Qureshi



Risk management is a critical facet of every organization, requiring adept handling to ensure business success. Here, Babatunde Raimi and Lolade Hamzat, seasoned professionals in Enterprise Risk Management, Financial Management, and IT Audit, and Credit Risk Management, unveil key insights into effectively mastering this integral aspect of business operation.

“Senior leadership needs to be aware of risks, both internal and external,” explains Hamzat. “There’s a lot to this discipline that many people are unaware of. When I work with companies in risk management, I strive to be utterly transparent about what I can offer and how we can mitigate risk.”

An alumnus of Lagos State University, Babatunde is well-versed in risk management strategies, with a special focus in financial services. His strategic vision and data-driven approaches have been instrumental in reducing financial losses by a substantial 60% during his tenure at Kobo360 Inc. Drawing from his extensive experience and innovative methods, Raimi shares his secrets to building effective risk management strategies.

Here are a few.

Know Your Industry

Thoroughly understanding your industry in terms of trends, nuances, and consumer patterns is pivotal to effective risk management. “This might seem obvious, but it often isn’t,” says Hamzat. “It’s particularly important for risk management specialists – we have to familiarize ourselves with each different industry we work with, to fully understand the potential risks involved.”

The various threats and opportunities inherent to a specific industry shape the landscape of potential risks a business may encounter. It’s important to have a comprehensive grasp of the industry’s current dynamics, regulatory framework, competitive landscape, emerging trends, and market disruptors. Being well-versed in these areas provides the opportunity to foresee and prepare for potential risks, turning them into growth opportunities. 

A deep knowledge of an industry thus provides a vital contextual backdrop for designing and implementing risk management strategies, enabling a business to remain resilient and adaptive in an ever-changing market environment.

Bring the Bosses In

Raimi strongly advises companies to include leadership when it comes to risk management. “This is crucial for several reasons,” he explains. “First and foremost, it sets the tone for the whole company, establishing the significance the organization places on risk management, which in turn influences the organizational culture and behavior towards risk.”

He adds that leaders are key in defining risk appetite, articulating risk tolerance levels, and aligning them with the company’s strategic objectives. Leadership plays a crucial role in ensuring that risk management is integrated into decision-making processes at all levels, fostering a proactive, rather than reactive, approach to risk. 

Additionally, leadership involvement facilitates efficient communication of risk management initiatives across the organization, ensuring that everyone understands their role in managing risk. Thus, leadership’s active participation is instrumental in creating an effective and holistic risk management framework that supports the organization’s strategic goals.


Danger From All Sides

“Internal risks can be overlooked,” says Hamzat. “But both internal and external risks are crucial to consider when crafting a comprehensive risk management strategy.”

Internal risks, such as operational inefficiencies, personnel issues, or system failures, directly stem from within the organization, and are generally under its control. By identifying and addressing these risks, a company can enhance its operational efficiency, safeguard its resources, and maintain a healthy organizational culture. 

On the other hand, external risks, including economic fluctuations, political instability, market competition, regulatory changes, or natural disasters, are typically outside the organization’s direct control. However, understanding these risks allows the organization to devise contingency plans, adapt strategies, and remain resilient amid uncertainties. 

By considering both internal and external risks, an organization can develop a robust risk management approach that helps ensure stability and growth even in the face of unpredictable circumstances.

Learn From Mistakes

“Risk management isn’t about being flawless; it’s about learning from our mistakes,” Raimi points out. Encouraging a culture of openness in which mistakes and lessons are shared and discussed across the company improves policies and processes. Mistakes can serve as powerful learning tools that help an organization refine its risk management practices. 

When an error occurs, it’s crucial to conduct thorough analyses to understand root causes and the contributing factors. This process allows organizations to uncover potential weaknesses or blind spots in their risk management strategies. Rather than hiding from or ignoring these mistakes, organizations should embrace them as opportunities for growth and improvement. 

The insights derived from these errors should be shared across the organization to prevent recurrence and to foster a culture of continuous learning and improvement. Moreover, risk management strategies should be updated based on these learnings, thereby transforming errors into valuable stepping stones towards a more resilient and risk-aware organization.

Thinking Outside the Box

Raimi’s philosophy of risk management goes beyond the traditional models. With his proficiency in data analysis tools such as Python, and R, he brings a unique, data-driven approach to the field. “The future of risk management lies in harnessing data effectively,” he says. 

Hamzat emphasizes that risk management is not a siloed function but a strategic contributor to an organization’s success. The CRO’s role becomes more relevant and fulfilling when risk management is seen as a strategic partner. Hamzat’s valuable insights into risk management reflect her considerable expertise and innovative thinking, providing a roadmap for organizations seeking to strengthen their risk management capabilities.

“True success in enterprise risk management is not merely surviving in the face of risks,” says Raimi, “but learning to dance with them, turning potential hazards into opportunities for business innovation and growth.” His insights offer a fresh perspective on risk management, one that transforms challenges into opportunities, contributing significantly to the growth and resilience of an organization.


About Babatunde Raimi

Babatunde Raimi is an accomplished professional in the realm of risk management, with a particular focus on Enterprise Risk Management, Financial Management, and IT Audit Risk Management. He holds a master’s degree in Insurance and Risk Management from Lagos State University and is currently working towards an MBA in Data Analytics at Hult International Business School. Raimi has an impressive track record, having reduced financial losses by 60% while serving as the Head of Insurance and Enterprise Risk Management at Kobo360 Inc. A master of data analysis using tools such as Python, R, SAS, and VBA, Raimi consistently applies his skills to inform strategic decisions, propelling new advancements in the spheres of financial and IT risk management.


About Lolade Hamzat

Lolade Hamzat, stands out as an astute financial expert, holding distinguished qualifications from the prestigious Hult International Business School. With a specific focus on “Consumer Credit Behavior and Systemic Risk in the U.S. Economy,” Lola’s expertise finds its roots in her tenure at Access Bank Plc. There, she effortlessly transitioned between roles, ranging from handling high-net-worth clients in Private Banking to crafting advanced financial models as a Financial Analyst. Her accomplishments in the bank are underscored by her knack for financial modeling, risk management, and her exemplary contributions to reducing credit impairment.

Beyond her professional achievements, Lola has a fervent passion for asset management. She envisions a future where she can shape the landscape of financial consultancy, leveraging her in-depth industry knowledge.


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