Why is Resilience Training needed now more than ever?

Today more than any other time in history, we are dealing with the unknown.  The norms we counted on to make our lives predictable and within our control, have been challenged.  This places our human drive to survive on alert! Our brains are designed to see change whether planned or unforeseen as potential danger. This means some of us are living in a flight, fight or fear mental state as a result of the pandemic, civil unrest, and an unstable economy. For some, these challenges can seem overwhelming. Stress and the unknown can cause performance anxiety and poor focus. In addition to affecting life at home, it has a tremendous impact on productivity in the workplace. Businesses are laying off workers, closing their doors entirely and permanently and the survivors are struggling to maintain sustainable levels of business productivity.

This crisis spans the nation.  The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) states that stress is the silent terrorist inside our bodies. Health care expenditures are nearly 50% greater for workers who experience high levels of stress. Where we work, work clients and vendors are all in a new playing field.  Your children are being home-schooled and your spouse and you may both be working from home next to your children.  Usual forms of relaxation and stress release are limited.

What does the research say?

Research indicates that understanding the stages of stress, change and transition facilitates greater ability to adapt to the changes. Learning stress management tools helps you design self-care practices.  Resilience enables organizations to cope effectively with unexpected events, bounce back from crises, and foster future success. While flexibility and agility are necessary, resilience is the critical success factor to deal with unexpected crises because it includes adaptation to come out of a crisis stronger than before. This characteristic distinguishes resilience from the ability to maintain functions despite disruptions.

These are the three resilience stages: anticipation, coping, and adaptation. In addition, three main perspectives distinguish organizational resilience. The first is an organization’s ability to resist adverse situations and return to a normal. The second is an organization’s ability to recover from impacts that exceed the firm’s coping range. The third looks beyond the maintenance and restoration of organizational functionality and focuses on process advancement.

In Harvard Business Review’s Article Resilience: Continuous Renewal of Competitive Advantages, organizational resilience is defined as an organization’s ability to anticipate potential threats, to cope effectively with adverse events, and to adapt to changing conditions. “Resilient businesses focus on speed, discipline, and flexible adaptation.”  The paper also states that “the changing landscape will demand a more flexible adaptation to business and that companies need to “build a muscle” composed of three capabilities.

  1. Strengthening the speed and execution you have experienced over the last 60 to 90 days
  2. Increase the pace and quality of skill building through retraining sales teams and frontline managers and other company customer-facing employees of the organization.
  3. Develop the ability to handle uncertainty through real-time monitoring and iterative testing of operating plans.

What are practical ways to deal with uncertainty?

  • Quiet your limbic system
  • Tools to stay positive
  • Know “what you know” and “don’t know”
  • Embrace what you cannot control
  • Focus on solutions
  • Have contingency plans
  • Resist seeking perfection
  • Reflecting (mentally or journal)
  • Don’t “should” yourself

What will a Resilience program focus on?

  • How brain science and stress are intertwined with change
  • How the triune brain responds to stress
  • Practical skills for managing stress
  • Three stages of change and transition
  • The phases of change and transition
  • Strategies for communication during difficult times
  • Managing mental and physical health in challenging times

How do we deliver the program at your business?

First Session for Large Group: 1.5 hours

The first session includes the whole group at a live or virtual all-hands meeting for 1 or 1.5 hours.  The preparation process for this large group will include the facilitator interviewing a few selected leaders to learn the big picture about change at your organization. This large group session will be an introduction to the above topics.

Breakout Small Group Sessions for follow up training and application

In the breakout sessions we will address how change and stress can be practically responded to through resilience.  There will be at least three 2-hour follow up sessions for small groups of 10-15 to provide customized support to each group and provide more specific training and application on dealing with stress, change and resilience.  Invista will provide resilience strategies and self-assessment tools and practices to engage in to deal resiliently with change and transition both personally and professionally.  The smaller groups will allow more personal interaction. Each participant will work on a personal resilience plan.

Adult learning and change are best over time so the new learning can be acquired in small segments. This is called successive approximation which is when one of a series of behaviors is reinforced in a program shaping behavior over time towards the desired outcome.