Building Resilience

Building Resilience in the Workplace

‘We know that we can influence our own resilience, and build on it to achieve more in life. This training will give you the tools and techniques you need to successfully navigate your way through today’s work world.’

Resilience has been defined as the capacity of an individual (or system) to withstand or recover rapidly from difficult conditions and adapt successfully. Resilience is often associated with the ability to cope in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or change. It’s a quality that can enhance your health and well-being as well as your ability to be successful at work.

What role does resilience play in the workplace?

An effective leader is someone who can recognize their own strengths and weaknesses and adapt accordingly depending on the changing circumstances they face both inside and outside of work. Resilience is often required when you are faced with change – whether it be structural, cultural or personal change – at home or at work. When faced with adversity, successful leaders are able to identify the relevant issues and see the bigger picture. They don’t get caught up in their own perspective but are instead willing to listen to other people’s perspective with an open mind.

Resilience in the workplace is vital because it can help you adapt to change more easily, develop positive relationships which are so important when working within teams, and improve your own health and well-being. The opinion of others are highly valued when developing solutions or coming up with new ideas so your ability to influence others will be greater if you are seen as someone who is resilient.

How can I develop my resilience?

Resilience may be something that either comes naturally or something that needs to be developed over time depending on how much adversity you face in your personal and professional life. One way of developing your resilience is by using the 5 steps for developing social resilience . The steps are:

1) Take responsibility for your situation

2) Be open to other perspectives

3) Practice gratitude and appreciation of what you have

4) Only compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today

5) Engage in activities that bring meaning to your life.

By practicing these steps you can develop a more positive mindset and in turn enhance your own self-belief.

What might prevent me from being resilient?

Some of the most common emotional barriers that influence whether or not someone is able to be resilient are:

Ego resilience :  Inflated sense of strength, power and importance with a lack of self-belief. May show signs of narcissism and arrogance. This person needs to be right in every situation.

Moral resilience :  Strength based on moral principles or strong religious beliefs with little awareness of own emotions, limits and boundaries. They may show signs of judgmental behaviour towards others who don’t share the same values or belief system.

Social resilience :  Strength to cope with adversity based on a positive mindset and a flexible, fluid approach to life where their self-esteem is not affected by the opinions of others.

What types of real-life examples demonstrate the importance of resilience? One example would be that of Daniel Acker who lost his leg to cancer when he was just seven years old. Despite being told by doctors that their son would never walk again, Daniel’s parents were incredibly resilient and engaged him in physical activity every day so he could build up strength in his muscles. He is now an accomplished athlete with an unbelievable ability to bounce back from adversity. Another example would be that of Maddy Coy who lost her eyesight at the age of twelve due to a brain tumour. This led to a number of other health issues and she was told she may never walk or talk again. Instead, Maddy has built up a great sense of resilience by engaging in activities such as horse riding which has improved her physical and mental well-being and given her a real sense of purpose.

How to develop the most valuable type of resilience, social resilience, by using these 5 steps:

1) Take responsibility for your situation:

Take personal responsibility for what has happened and where you are. If something doesn’t work out or a goal isn’t achieved, understand that it’s down to your own decisions and actions that have got you to where you are now. Owning up to your mistakes can be hard but by doing so you give yourself the chance of learning from any missteps and identifying the strengths you do have.

2) Be open to other perspectives:

Often we can’t see things from others’ points of view as we are too caught up in our own. If someone close to you is having a difficult time or struggling with something they need your support and help so by taking the time and effort to understand their point of view you will find that they are more likely to be open with you and to return the support.

3) Practice gratitude and appreciation of what you have:

As a society we tend not leave relationships behind when something good happens for us. No matter how far away from home or family we move, it’s easy to maintain contact and keep strong social connections. There is a lot of strength in having people around you who love and care for you, so by practicing gratitude and appreciation of what you have you can increase your sense of belonging.

4) Only compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today:

Focusing on comparing yourself to others can often lead to a loss of confidence as you start to make negative assumptions about yourself based on what others are doing. The truth is that everyone has different talents and abilities so by focusing on how far you have come and your personal progress, your sense of achievement and self-worth will increase which will give you the emotional strength to keep going.

5) Re-evaluate your goals and dreams if things don’t turn out the way you planned:

Trying to reach a goal can sometimes be harder than it first seems so give yourself time to learn from your mistakes and develop new skills. By re-evaluating your goals and dreams you will be able to work out how best to achieve your aims and will have a greater chance of success.

What is meant by team resilience?

“Team resilience refers to the ability of a team to handle change, work through challenges and continue to perform well while staying connected as a unit. It is also known as “psychological hardiness,” “mental toughness,” or simply “resilience.” Resilience is a meta-skill that can be taught and learned, and it is one of the most important factors for success.

Why is resilience such an integral part of any successful team?

Put simply, without resilience a team will flounder and ultimately fail to meet their goals or even exist in the case of destructive teams. Resilience, when leveraged effectively, can allow any team to overcome problems and obstacles that present when a company needs to adapt quickly to organizational changes or introduce new procedures and policies when faced with challenges.

What causes a team to break down?

There are many factors that could cause a team to break down. The following is a list of some common issues:


– Perhaps the biggest challenge for any organization, change can be both good and bad. When implemented correctly change can lead to positive growth and promote future success but when not handled well, or quickly enough it can lead to widespread breakdowns and cause highly functional, highly effective teams to start falling apart.

Changing priorities:

– One of the major causes of change is an organizations shifting priorities. When this happens it can cause disruption and hurt the morale of existing teams as they are forced to re-prioritize their goals, objectives, workloads etc. under a new system where there are different expectations. Often times these changes may not be implemented until the last minute which can add even more stress on already stressed out teams.

Lack of communication:

– Communication is vital for any type of relationship and when it breaks down, whether intentionally or unintentionally, it can lead to some major issues that damage both internal and external relationships. When a company decides to go into “silent mode” and stop communicating with their employees or clients it can cause many individuals to think the worst and come up with ideas on what is happening that may not be anywhere close to the truth.


– When a company starts operating at maximum capacity, whether due to lack of resources, increases in workloads etc., this can lead to burnout which could affect the overall team dynamic. When one or more individuals in a group feel like they are not making an impact because their work isn’t recognized, or valued then this can destroy motivation and morale which can lead to resentment that has time and time again proven to be extremely destructive for teams. These issues are just some of the major problems that can result in the downfall of any team.

Why is resilience important for teams?

During difficult times, or when facing problems it is easy for team members to become disconnected and retreat into themselves. There are many reasons for this but between them all they can leave everyone on a team feeling like an island without bridges to connect them together again. Resilience, when implemented correctly, can allow teams to bounce back from these difficult times quickly by helping them recognize the problems but not allowing them to take over. It gives them the strength to work through issues together and maintain their connections while still being able to effectively deliver results.

Steps for building resilience in your team:

Create accountability:

One of the best ways to create resilience is to make sure everyone on the team feels responsible for their actions. Accountability creates a shared responsibility that will help each member of the team take personal responsibility for both their successes and failures which can lead to more open communication that can help build trust within the group.

Encourage participation:

When it comes down to it every team is made up of individuals with their own ideas, thoughts and opinions. When a company encourages participation it allows each team member to express these ideas and share them without feeling like they are going to be criticized or judged.

Respect individual differences:

Every team has different skills and strengths that make them unique which means that each person will have different approaches to their work. As long as these differences don’t interfere with the overall team dynamic then they should be embraced and not criticized.

Establish clear boundaries:

Resilience can only be achieved when there are boundaries in place to prevent problems from arising again once a team has been able to navigate through them successfully. When a company sets clear ground rules, and boundaries for individuals to follow that are manageable then it allows them to feel as though they have control over their actions which can lead to a feeling of empowerment which is one of the most important ingredients towards building resilience.

Praise those who push through:

During difficult times, or when facing problems there will always be those team members who have the drive to push forward. A company should always reward these individuals for their bravery and courage because it is what inspires others to do the same.

The best teams are ones that can bounce back quickly from problems or difficult situations which means that resilience must be taught, encouraged and implemented into every aspect of team dynamics if companies want to achieve this goal.

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