The conventional way of starting any article is by easing our way through its content until reaching a stage where it writes itself. However, due to the nature of our topic, I believe that starting by laying down facts that are related to it from near and far gives it justice. WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO DEVELOP RESILIENCY AS LEADERS? Is a question that each organization must ask, especially that being resilient is the core of every business.
Let us start by identifying where and why the word resilient is commonly used. Research shows that it is used in advertising, campaigns and words of mouth to describe how tough, hard and reliable the objects are. Yes objects… Cars, buildings, bridges, roads, tables, chairs, even cooking knives have been described as such. The question is how about our human assets? Should they not be resilient at what they do?
Recently, there was a surge in realizing that the human factor in any organization is detrimental to its success or failure. The investments in that field were enormous, yet it is done when things are going well, and when it is not, we scrap all investments and hit the panic button without realizing that this is the time that our resiliency should shine through showing our strengths and values.
As with anything else that is considered the rage or the latest in fashion trends, resiliency attracted plenty of attention that some organizations weaved it through its fabric and made it part of their DNA. That is fine. In fact, that is great, however, the common mistake was that being resilient was treated as an attribute that is required from individuals only.
Resiliency will not exist among individuals – all individuals unless they operate in a resilient environment that is lead by a resilient organization through resilient leaders.
On that note, resilient organizations should operate in an open environment, where the following traits are adopted to become the norm:
Objectives and goals are clearly defined and appropriately communicated:
This will give the staff a clear view of where the organization is heading to in terms of future and growth. It is paramount to include the staff in the planning process at their respective levels, as will help in gaining their commitment towards the goals. This leads to the next point.
Teamwork spirit amongst your staff:
A team that is made of individuals that have high level of trust for each other, respect, loyalty and honesty will create the component of a team that will be ready to quickly adapt to any expected and non-expected changes, especially during turbulent times.
Empowerment of leaders to steer the ship should be at the realm:
The leadership should not be limited to managing decision-making processes and stakeholders. Resilient leadership is when we manage to boost the morale of the staff members, particularly during challenging times.
The ability of foreseeing the future and planning and preparing for it:
Being able to identify future threats through continuous and regular analysis allows organizations to be in a better position to face them.
Hard work, ethical, goes the extra mile, committed, enthusiastic, possess positive nature and enthusiastic are all characteristics of a resilient leader. Since being resilient is contagious, the same characteristics apply to all individuals in the organization, as behaviour in good times and challenging ones filters down to everyone in our teams.
Since organizations’ success or failure is measured by profits and losses, the scale for measuring resiliency should be through the pace of bouncing back from crisis and challenging times. All the above traits and characteristics should help with that. However, one important factor requires our attention. That is consistency in everything we do. Consistency exists through clear and common “how to do it” approach that is practiced by all and encouraged/supported by leaders.
This brings me back to the importance of developing resiliency as leaders. In order to discuss the why, we must shed light on the how; hence, the following traits should be considered. While preparing for this article, I have noticed that the research that was conducted by Forbes in order to come up with tips on how to become a more resilient leader sum it all up:
Resilient Leaders Communicate Effectively:
Resilient leaders will focus on having strong communication skills and always make sure others understand changes, expectations or new directions.
No one is perfect, and everyone has room to grow. Resilient leaders are aware of this and they ask for feedback throughout their careers in order to always keep improving their skills.
Build Positive/Trusting Relationships:
Working to build positive relationships where others feel they can trust you is a huge part of resilient leadership.
Be a Risk Taker:
Taking bold risks and being open to new ideas is what keeps an organization thriving even during times of drastic change.
Projects cannot move forward until decisions are made. Part of being a resilient leader is being able to make decisions even under pressure.
The best way to do this is to teach resiliency and give productive feedback and coaching to others so they can grow and move past their mistakes. This will help the organization become more resilient overall.
Embracing change takes courage and requires a positive vision of where the organization wants to go. Resilient leaders are willing to change, encourage other to embrace change, and they can provide the strong leadership required to help the organization change.
With the above in mind, we look at why developing resiliency as leaders is important?
1.1 Resilient leaders practice what they preach:
Setting the right example as leaders influences your organization and its staff, i. Remaining positive even during set-backs and challenging times They don’t dwell over failures, instead they try to find ways to get the job done in a positive manner.
1.2 They welcome Change:
Since they believe that change is the only constant, resilient leaders should create a sense of calmness amongst all employees while promoting that change is ok. They should be abreast of all changes, be it technological to new competitor Through showing that they are adaptable to change, resilient leaders will drive a level of trust that shows them coping under that kind of pressure will only result in effective decision making on their behalf.
Finally, and after careful consideration to all other elements and factors that have impacts on organizations, being resilient at work place from organizations to leaders and individuals should be amongst our set of priorities in moving forward. Nelson Mandela said, “Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”
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