Setbacks and hard knocks will happen at one time or another. What makes some people able to bounce back more quickly than others? How do people get back up when they’ve been knocked down? How do you separate home and work stress and not allow negative stress from one area to influence the other?
Work demands, changes, relationships, communication can all contribute to challenges with work. Employees need to be able to remain productive and focused even through disruptive and even unwelcome changes. Everyone who has ever found the strength to overcome obstacles is by definition resilient. Developing resilience should be viewed as an essential work survival skill.
Think about all the stress that you as a leader, have and how you have to cope with your own stress. How can you model behavior and display resilience as a leader? What are those to tools you need to have to be able to coach your employees when their resilience is lagging? Resilience enables employees at all organizational levels cope with those setbacks.
Here are 4 5 tips that can help you be a more resilient leader
1.People’s relationships with their colleagues and their managers define how they feel about work. As a team leader, you will need to take notice that pressure means different things to different employees. What may seem like an achievable target or goal for one employee may feel out of reach for another. Your employee’s ability to balance and cope with outside work will undoubtedly affect their ability to cope with added pressures. Help them to focus on what they can influence or change and not what they can’t. The key is to communicate openly and regularly about what’s expected and to provide support so they can perform at their best and maintain a healthy work-life balance.
2. Infrequent feedback, inadequate training and even out-of-date technology or equipment can combine to push your employees over the top and maybe even burn-out. Leaders are the key to ensuring that employees are equipped to do the job being asked of them. Investing in your employee’ development is also important. Make positive performance conversations an integral part of your management practice and ensure any development that is promised gets delivered.
3. Recognize and understand your own management style. Your awareness of the impact your own management style has on your employees is crucial to helping to build resilience. If you yourself are feeling pressure, you may over-use your strengths with unintended even negative impact on your employees. To help you stay resilient, become more mindful. The first question to ask yourself, as the leader is this;‘How might I be part of the problem – and the solution’?
4. Employees worry about how changes and restructuring will affect them. If employees are worried about their own job security it can take its toll and make it difficult for them to focus on their work. During these times, you will want to enhance resiliency on by finding ways to involve and engage your employees in the process. Your employees are much more likely to feel positive about any changes if they feel that they are involved in creating the way forward. Try “Appreciative Inquiry”. Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a change management approach that focuses on identifying what is working well, analyzing why it is working well and then doing more of it. This process encourages your employees to shift their thinking from focusing on what is lacking or going wrong towards what is working well and how they can build on it to create new opportunities. Involve your team as much as possible in planning, decision-making and problem-solving.
5. Have your employees keep an “Accomplishment Log” of their goals, progress and successes. And try keeping your own Accomplishment Log too, and turn to it as an energizer whenever you hit a roadblock. It will remind you of all the times you’ve made it past roadblocks before. Start each team meeting with a positive spin ‘What have we done this week that we are proud of?’
How you, as a leader, view adversity and stress strongly affects how well you and your employees will succeed. The ability to cultivate resilience with your employees is a leadership skill that will serve you well in an increasingly stressful work world. Resilience is not a passive quality, but an active process and is completely attainable.
I invite you to share your stories your experiences, thoughts, or comments. You canemail or call me for more information on soft skills/interpersonal skills workshops that can transform employees.