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In today’s business environment, we’ve come to accept that change is constant. Even recently, as the world came to a halt, work continued, albeit with a change in platform. The need to ‘go with the flow’ has become a given in this ever-changing and fast-paced reality.
A resilient workforce plays a major role in accommodating and adjusting to such changes. Resilience determines how employees respond and adapt to such pressures.
The Role of Resilience
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from stressful situations and keep going with an attitude of growth rather than defeat.
Research suggests that organizations need to focus on building emotional resilience in the workplace to optimize efficiency. It seems even more relevant when taking into consideration how better mental health directly impacts employee productivity.
Like any employment skill, resilience can and should be developed through training and support. It can help with the following at the workplace:
- Increases flexibility and openness to change
- Fosters better communication
- Helps to keep one driven and motivated
- Helps maintain focus on the main goal
- Increases self-awareness, thereby highlighting strengths
Resilience Training at the Workplace
Workplace stress is costing the global economy around $1 trillion annually, according to WHO. So, it’s not surprising that companies are turning to reformed work policies, from financial coaching to reduce employee burdens (Harrods) and four-day workweeks to yield maximum productivity (Perpetual Guardian), to virtual yoga and mindfulness exercises to ensure wellness during the pandemic (EY).
Resilient workforce development serves as a long-term approach. It does not seek to control factors that bring in stress, but rather helps employees deal with and manage these factors. And since many stressors cannot be controlled, it often makes sense to learn resilience.
Emotional resilience can be developed by encouraging the following practices:
Mindfulness training has been shown to build resilience to stress, and a daily practice of about 10 to 20 minutes per day has proved to be beneficial.
Compartmentalization of Work
An often-overlooked approach, compartmentalization encourages the practice of one task at the time.
Instead of encouraging multitasking, test employees focus solely on the task at hand. Instead of working, checking emails, and other distractions, allocate time slots for different jobs. This method allows one to concentrate completely.
A systemized approach to a work day helps decrease cognitive strain and effectively deal with tasks.
Knowing and understanding how one’s behaviour and reactions affect those around them helps employees communicate effectively. It can minimize workplace hostility, thereby building a positive environment for interactions.
Emotional intelligence can facilitate stress resilience. Developing emotional intelligence also touches upon many other factors like self-awareness, reflection, and compassion. These are all effective tools that positively impact how one reacts to situations.
Cutting Out Procrastination
Seeing as procrastination leads to stress build-up, psychologist Dr. Harry Barry recommends breaking tasks into smaller ones to help beat the urge to push taxing tasks for a later time.
Organizations can tailor resilience training programs that exercise employee minds in the above areas with policies and outlooks that support mental health. Businesses that are flexible to market changes, and align themselves accordingly, succeed. But this can only happen when their workforce adapts as well.
These practices will help you not only effectively cope with stress but also thrive in times of adversities and dynamic situations.