Leaders can soup up resilience in themselves as well as their teams by making a shift in how they size up a challenge. Rather than dwelling on their misfortune, resilient leaders move quickly to develop a plan of action.
It’s helpful when adversity strikes to ask questions that examine the problem, then consider constructive approaches through the lens of four different dimensions that research on resilience and hardiness identify as crucial:
1. Control: Which facets of the situation can you potentially influence? Think about how a person you emulate and admire would act. Then, work with your team to identify all of the areas the team can have an impact on.
2. Ownership: Regardless of your job description, how can you step up to make the most immediate and positive impact on the issue? Think about what effect your efforts will have on the people around you. And consider what you can do to encourage those hanging back to pitch in.
3. Reach: How big or bad do you think the problem is? Is it something so far-reaching that it may cast a shadow over all of your activities? Think about what you can do to address the potential pitfalls, as well as what you can do to maximize the potential upside. Baby steps count, so even if you can come up with something that improves the situation by just 10 percent, that’s progress. Consider the strengths and resources you and your team can develop by addressing the issue. Identify with your team what each person can do to increase the chances that things will work out.
4. Endurance: How long do you think the situation will last? Think about what you’d like the business to look like on the other side of the obstacle. Consider what you can do in the next four hours to move in that direction. Develop a series of steps and an ongoing process for dealing with the setback. Keep your team members informed and ask for their input.