As a leader how and what do you do to maintain resiliency in leadership? By resiliency, I mean, recover speedily from problems and maintain elasticity, bend, stretch and not break during challenging situations.
All organizations encounter challenges, issues and difficulties everyday including financial shortfalls, downsizing, increased workloads, and succession issues.
These challenges force the organization to turn inward and look at itself and its effectiveness. It is a time to regroup and assess where the organization stands.
If the organization embeds and nurtures a culture based on mutual trust and where all members of the organization strive to be trustworthy and treat one another with respect and caring then you have a solid foundation to deal with the challenges and issues you face. But where do you begin? It begins with a focus on people and a focus on building and enhancing positive relationships.
Most peoples want to be part of the solution. They would like to have a sense that their ideas are heard, not necessarily accepted but considered with some action taken. They want to be part of the team, participating, engaging and solving some of the challenges.
6 Steps to Lead When You Face Challenges
How do you do this as a leader? For me it means spending a significant amount of time to:
- Make personal connections
- Build important relationships
- Interact face to face when possible
- Be open, transparent and authentic
- Model integrity with the right intent
- Act on feedback and deliver results
Much like you have to turn inward as an organization to assess where it stands, you as a leader have to turn inward and determine how you will act as a leader, especially when you and your organization face challenging times.
Self-examination is not easy to do, it is risky and when you build an environment which encourages engagement and open, honest communication you will hear some things you don’t really want to hear. At times it is tough to take, but it is necessary because it enhances communication, opens dialogue, improves relationships and makes you more reflective and resilient.
You must be reflective to be resilient. Reflect on how you can convert uncommitted teammates into supporters and partners. Building a resilient organization requires that you begin with reflection designed to engage your team and turn them into flexible, creative and engaged problem solvers. When our organization was facing a significant shortfall, it was our goal to deal with it through openness, transparency, and to seek and to act on the input received.
Tough decisions had to be made as it resulted in the reduction of staff, reduction of programs and a reduction in budgets. It was also our goal to bend and stretch the system but not break it. We were able to demonstrate resiliency as a team and the organization has not broken; in fact it has flourished.
I am convinced that with a focus on people, on building positive relationships, and by continuing to enhance a culture of trust, respect, transparency and team you can tackle the challenges you face daily including the tough ones that will inevitably come your way.