The definition of resilience in the Oxford dictionary: The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.
I would also add the ability to adapt to change and not give up when challenges arise.
How does this work in a leader role? To what level do we expect our leaders to be resilient?
Most of us have challenges to deal with on a regular basis whether it's work based or privately.
No matter who we are, all these situations will affect us and can then interfere with our ability to be productive at work. Even a manager or a CEO has times where days are tough for whatever reason!
This is where resilience comes in. How long do we allow a situation to affect us and how do we spring back into action?
Awareness of the affects is a start, understanding self and the impact adversity has on us goes a long way to learn how to deal with it. I am astounded how many people do not understand their thoughts and actions when challenging situations arise. The more aware we are, the more we can avoid situations where negative behaviour affects our leadership skills.
Listening to our bodies and feelings is such a big part of then being able to handle situations in a correct and helpful way rather than compounding the situation and creating additional stress to everyone involved.
Change has an impact on everyone, the leaders as well. Working together and being inclusive by communicating and clarifying any decisions, the teams are able to support their leader and feel safe to ask questions.
The most common feeling when change happens is to feel uncertain, what will happen to me? Will I be OK? Unless the communication is clear and concise from the leaders, this will affect all involved.
SO, what does a person need to do to be an effective and resilient leader?
Here are some suggestions:
- Being the leader means being a role model. Just the same as being a role model to our children is important, so is being one at work! As a leader you will be observed. If you feel unsure at times; act as if you know what you are doing! Stay calm, focussed, communicate and be encouraging. Show trust by asking for help, delegate when needed and be available.
- When challenges arise, take control and ensure you find out what the team needs from you. This creates team spirit and belonging which we all need to get out the other side.
- There is no failure, only learning! We all make mistakes and that's OK. Recognise and move on. Yet again, just like parenting; admit/say what happened, apologise, learn from it. Showing vulnerability is a strength!
Look after your most valuable asset, your employees.