How to Become More Resilient at Work & Build Resilient Teams
In this exclusive guest post by Caspar Craven, a mental resilience speaker and the mastermind behind ‘Big Bold Goals’, learn how to build resilience in the workplace.
Watch Caspar in our official interview above then read his fantastic insight into resilience below:
“We need to be more resilient…”
“We need to look after our mental health…”
“We need to create a more inclusive work environment…”
How often do we hear these statements?
In times of forced change, the desire for growth at work reveals the cracks that hold a team back from achieving its potential. I hear these challenges across all industry sectors and from companies large and small.
What is it that ties these challenges together and what can each person in your team, starting with you, do differently about it?
The first step is to think differently, then, act differently. It’s only when you think and act differently will you likely see a different outcome.
What is Resilience?
Simply put, it’s the ability to recover from difficulties.
There are two levels to this: there’s the individual level and then the team level.
Starting at the individual level, we all have different levels of resilience forged by different life experiences.
Some will have faced immense challenges and have developed a set of skills and tools to be able to bounce back, recovering from setbacks. Some will have faced fewer challenges and not have as many skills and tools to fall back on.
How does this relate to your work team?
A team is a collective of individuals working toward a common goal, where there is some level of trust. It starts with the life experiences of the individuals within that team, then, as the team interacts together, that shared experience will come into play.
The team will learn how to respond to challenges, adversity and adapt to changing situations. It’s this reaction and adaption that is key.
Bringing resilience into focus
Something I find helpful is to try and visualise resilience. Imagine if you will, that resilience is placed on a normal distribution curve.
Where would you sit on that curve? Where would your team sit on that curve? It’s a hard question to know the answer to, but the clear message is that “more” resilience is always a good thing!
There are two key starting points for building personal and professional resilience.
The first is on a personal level. How can an individual increase their resilience levels? There are many avenues to explore in this space, but crucially it has to begin with each individual taking charge of their development.
The way we learn to make good decisions is by making decisions, not by taking direction. We will never learn to be resilient until we learn to take decisions, stretch ourselves and leave our comfort zones.
We must experience failure, so we know how to react. Take small steps to do hard things; hard things build resilience. Take cold showers, learn something new, put yourself in different environments - there are endless ways to build resilience!
One measure of growth in this space is how you feel about yourself and how this feeling can help to shape the story of who you are. Do hard things, grapple and struggle with challenges, because coming out the other side shows that we are capable of more than we think.
This feeling is a bedrock of what enables resilience.
The second is at the team level - how can we build resilience together as a team in a way that brings the team closer and more able to handle change?
One way is to create a culture where self-development is encouraged, where learning is encouraged, where people own their own decisions and learn from them.
Harvard Business Review finds that "stories of failure help us relate, normalise setbacks, and create intimacy”. When did you last share with your team something where you failed and learnt from the experience?
Sharing the pain and taking time to reflect will encourage others to do the same.
Inclusive Work Environments
Creating a more inclusive work environment, a culture of trust, and more resilient teams can seem tough.
But we can all learn, both individually and collectively, to become more resilient and to bounce back faster and stronger from a challenge.
Caspar Craven is a motivational speaker, author, and entrepreneur whose obsession is how to achieve ‘Big Bold Goals’ through effective leadership and teamwork.
Megan has managed the internal content for Champions Speakers since 2019 when she joined the company as a Digital Copyrighter. In 2020, she progressed to Content Executive and only a year later, Megan was promoted to Senior Content Executive, where s... Read more
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