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​Internal Auditors Challenged to Innovate at ‘The Speed of Risk’

IIA President/CEO Richard Chambers’ new book calls on internal auditors to be change agents in an unstable environment

The Speed of Risk: Lessons Learned on the Audit Trail, 2nd EditionLAKE MARY, Fla. (March 11, 2019) – To remain relevant in a global business environment of increasing competition, technological advances, and downsizing, internal auditors must act tactfully as agents of change – and embrace the potential risks associated with innovation, according to a new book released today by the Internal Audit Foundation.

The Speed of Risk: Lessons Learned on the Audit Trail, 2nd Edition, by IIA President and CEO Richard F. Chambers, shares insights gathered over Chambers’ more than 40-year career to equip internal auditors and their organizations with the wisdom to prevail in a turbulent environment – one in which risks come fast and furiously, and often arrive without warning.

Rich with timeless anecdotes about the nature and pace of risk, stakeholder expectations, relationship acumen, disruption, culture and more, The Speed of Risk also aims to better prepare emerging internal audit leaders for career challenges and opportunities on the horizon. Chambers draws on his extensive experience in internal auditing to shed light on varied topics of concern to the profession today, including:

  • Perspectives that management and audit committees are reluctant to share;
  • How marketing internal audit can enhance awareness about its value;
  • Frequent sources of tension between management and internal audit;
  • The idea that internal auditors can audit anything – but not everything;
  • The importance of tact and the art of bringing about positive change;
  • How poor audit planning can cause “the wheels to come off” the engagement;
  • How smart internal auditors ask smart questions; and,
  • The need for ethical internal auditors to be courageous.

With new perspectives on recent developments that pose critical implications for the profession, Chambers builds upon lessons shared in the first edition of Lessons Learned on the Audit Trail, which was translated into Spanish, French, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese, and sold more than 15,000 copies worldwide following its 2014 release.

“While organizations are raising the bar on effective risk management, executives face extraordinary headwinds spawned by a turbulent environment in which risks materialize virtually overnight,” Chambers wrote. “Internal auditors are finding that rigid, risk-based annual audit plans are increasingly relics of the past that position them to addressing yesterday’s challenges. This reinforces my long-held belief that internal audit must take a more continuous approach to risk assessment – auditing at the speed of risk – which is a recurring theme in this updated edition.”

The Speed of Risk includes a foreword by Paul J. Sobel, CIA, QIAL, CRMA, chairman of the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO), and chief risk officer and former chief audit executive for Georgia-Pacific LLC.

“Richard’s extensive and diverse experience makes him uniquely positioned to share the valuable lessons gleaned from his career,” wrote Sobel, who was IIA Global Chairman in 2013-14. “This book demonstrates how timeless insights still must be customized to meet the needs of an ever-changing world.”

The Speed of Risk, published by the nonprofit Internal Audit Foundation, is available in hardcover, paperback and as an e-book through the IIA Bookstore.


Media contact

John Babinchak

About the Internal Audit Foundation

The Internal Audit Foundation (Foundation) is the donor-supported arm of The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA). The nonprofit Foundation conducts groundbreaking research and scholarly publishing, offers essential career development and thought leadership products through The IIA Bookstore, and works with colleges and universities through the Internal Auditing Education Partnership (IAEP) program to enlighten the next generation of internal auditors. For more information, visit or

About The Institute of Internal Auditors

The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) is the internal audit profession’s most widely recognized advocate, educator, and provider of standards, guidance, and certifications. Established in 1941, The IIA today serves more than 190,000 members from more than 170 countries and territories. The IIA’s global headquarters are in Lake Mary, Fla. For more information, visit