Why People Need Resilient Leaders

Resilience is our ability to bounce back from adversity. It’s what allows us to recover from change or hardship, whether in the workplace or life in general.

Today, as we adapt to unprecedented social distancing requirements in our professional and personal lives, changes seem to come at lightening speed — and our resilience is tested more than ever.

As a leader, it’s important that you demonstrate resiliency for your co-workers. That’s because in difficult times, your people are looking to you for emotional strength and courage. They’re looking to you to set the direction and light the path. If you’re resilient, you’ll project a positive outlook that will help others maintain the emotional strength they need to commit to a shared vision.

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If these tough times are testing your ability to bounce back, there are steps you can take to advance and thrive. By modifying your thoughts and actions, you can change your views, habits, and responses. Not only will that help to broaden your own outlook, it will also inspire your team to become more adaptable.

8 Steps to Become More Resilient

To become more resilient, focus on the following 8 areas.

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1. Accept change. Find ways to become more comfortable with change. Change is constant and inevitable, and you can only be successful if you accept it rather than resist it. Get tips for navigating the 3 stages of transition in our article, How to Transition Through Change.

2. Learn continuously. Learn new skills, gain new understandings, and apply them during times of change. Don’t hold onto old behaviors and skills, especially when it’s obvious that they don’t work anymore. Remember, great leaders are great learners.

3. Take charge. Embrace self-empowerment. Take charge of your own career and development. Don’t expect someone else to guide the way. Our article, How to Lead Through a Crisis, stresses the importance of taking action.

4. Define purpose. Develop a “personal why” that gives your work meaning or helps you put it into a larger context. A clear sense of purpose helps you to assess setbacks within the framework of a broader perspective.

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5. Create balance. Form your identity apart from your job. A job is just one facet of your identity, and a career is just one aspect of your life. Separate who you are from what you do. Learn more about how to rethink work-life balance.

6. Cultivate relationships. Develop and nurture a broad network of personal and professional relationships. Personal relationships create a strong base of support — a critical element in achieving goals, dealing with hardships, and developing perspective. Remember that relationships are important for your team too. Learn more in A Leader’s Network: How to Help Your Talent Invest in the Right Relationships at the Right Time.

7. Reflect. Whether you’re celebrating success or enduring hardship, making time to reflect can help you handle stress, uncertainty, and setbacks. Reflection fosters learning, new perspectives, and a degree of self-awareness that can enhance your resiliency

8. Reframe skills. Question (and even change) your definition of yourself or your career. Reframe how you see your skills, talents, and interests. By casting your skills in a new light, you can see how they might shift into new patterns of work and behavior. Learn how to strengthen your personal leadership brand.

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Help your team become more resilient with Live Online Custom Leadership Training. Available topics include Building Organizational Resilience, the Resilience Advantage, and more.

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