Updated: December 12, 2023

How to Develop Resilience in the Workplace

You found our guide on how to develop resilience in the workplace.

Resilience at work means maintaining excellent productivity even in the face of workplace challenges. The ability to develop a schedule and working balance allows you to meet and exceed your duties. The purpose of building workplace resilience is to help workers develop and navigate a fulfilled working experience.

Workplace resilience is one of the best productivity tips to help boost employee productivity. Resilience is also a key leadership skill and is one of the top good leadership qualities.

workplace-resilience

The article includes:

  • what is resilience in the workplace
  • examples of showing resilience at work
  • ways to improve resilience
  • how to improve employee resilience
  • how to build resilience at work

Let’s get started!

What is resilience in the workplace?

Resilience in the workplace is an individual’s capacity to maintain psychological and emotional well-being while confronting various stressors, setbacks, and changes. Resilience empowers individuals to navigate the often challenging landscape of professional environments. Resilient employees exhibit a remarkable ability to adapt to unexpected situations, bounce back from failures, and remain focused on their goals despite adversities. These members possess the agility to embrace change, the emotional intelligence to manage stress effectively, and the optimism to view challenges as opportunities for growth. Moreover, resilient individuals foster a positive work environment by inspiring their colleagues, problem-solving collaboratively, and contributing to a culture of shared support and adaptability.

In the face of ever-evolving workplaces and unpredictable circumstances, resilience plays a pivotal role in sustaining employee performance and well-being. Resilient workers are not immune to challenges. Rather, these team members possess a unique set of skills that let them endure and flourish in the face of these challenges. These employees exhibit exceptional emotional regulation. This trait allows members to maintain their focus and composure even when confronted with high-pressure situations. This emotional stability, combined with strong problem-solving abilities, empowers workers to find effective solutions to complex issues. Managing stress and maintaining a healthy work-life balance helps prevent burnout and ensures consistent productivity. By fostering resilience, organizations can enhance employee retention, satisfaction, and overall team cohesion.

Creating a resilient workplace culture requires a strategic approach from both employees and employers. Organizations play a crucial role in providing the necessary resources and support systems that facilitate resilience development. For instance, firms can offer training programs that equip employees with stress management techniques, time management skills, and conflict resolution strategies. Moreover, organizations can promote open communication channels, encouraging employees to voice their concerns and seek guidance when faced with challenges. By recognizing and rewarding resilience, organizations reinforce its value and inspire others to cultivate this trait. Ultimately, a resilient workplace benefits the individuals who thrive within it and the organization as a whole. These teams become better equipped to navigate change, innovate, and achieve long-term success.

Examples of showing resilience at work

Resilience is an empowering tool that fuels an individual to approach different angles of life positively.

​Here are some examples of showing resilience at work:

  • Adapting swiftly to new roles and maintaining a positive outlook
  • Using constructive feedback as a catalyst for personal growth
  • Overcoming project challenges by adjusting strategies
  • Excelling at time management despite unexpected disruptions
  • Leading calmly and making informed decisions during crises
  • Setting clear boundaries for a healthy work-life balance
  • Multitasking effectively and staying focused under pressure
  • Addressing conflicts with respect, seeking resolutions
  • Bouncing back from setbacks with determination to succeed
  • Boosting team morale and fostering collaboration
  • Embracing uncertainty and maintaining productivity
  • Learning from failures to drive future improvements
  • Pursuing continuous learning for personal development
  • Thriving while working remotely, staying productive
  • Balancing heavy workloads while practicing self-care

This trait helps workers focus when solving challenges around them. Resilience is strength, and employees should learn how to leverage it to achieve a successful career.

Ways to improve resilience

Workplace resilience is an integral part of a company’s success. Although resilience may not eliminate your problems, it can help you solve them. This trait can also teach you how to manage your time and tasks to ensure you better handle stress. There are several ways to improve resilience, including the following techniques.

1. Cultivate a Growth Mindset

Cultivating a growth mindset is about embracing challenges and setbacks as opportunities for personal development and learning. This attitude is based on the belief that you can develop your abilities and intelligence through dedication, effort, and perseverance. In a growth mindset, failures are temporary setbacks, not indications of a lack of capability. This mindset encourages you to step out of your comfort zone, take risks, and view obstacles as chances to enhance their skills and understanding. By focusing on the process rather than just the outcome, those with a growth mindset are more likely to persist in the face of adversity. You may also find yourself seeking constructive feedback and continuously improving yourself, fostering a lifelong journey of growth and achievement.

2. Connect Yourself

An excellent way to build resilience is to learn to work with others. Building and nurturing positive relationships with employees in your workplace can help you solve challenges when they arise. When events do not go according to plan, these folks can assist you. It is advisable to relate with individuals positively wherever you are, at work or home, because they might be the key to scaling a difficult obstacle.

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3. Learn from Experience

Experience can teach you critical lessons, be it of yours or those of others. Past workers once encountered the difficulties that you now face. You can take advantage of past projects and reports to learn how others managed the situation. You can seek the wisdom and experience of superiors in your workplace. A good idea is to ask questions and communicate with other players in your field and industry.

Also, revisiting your diary or journal is a good way to get details of how you solved past problems. It is advisable to have a work diary highlighting various difficulties and the steps you took to handle them. You can highlight how well those strategies worked. Although the circumstances might not be the same, you have an insight into what can work for your current situation.

4. Be Proactive

You should be proactive and find a way to figure out how best you can solve problems as they come. A good idea would be to develop an actionable plan and take steps immediately. Although recovering from significant setbacks or losses may be hard, you should get moving as quickly as possible. If you keep on moving, then you will probably have less time to worry about the setbacks. You should keep in mind that worry and anxiety hardly resolve any situation. Action and strength can change a situation from impossible to possible.

5. Do Not Lose Hope

Keeping hope for a solution is an important step to resilience in a challenging work situation. No matter how impossible the problem is or how bad the mistake is, never lose hope in your ability to find a way. You should be optimistic that the difficulties and errors you face and make today will make you an experienced and better worker tomorrow. Hope also keeps you from getting frustrated and falling into depression and stress.

6. Practice Self-Care

Being resilient also means knowing how to take care of yourself. This step ensures that you are on top of every task. A good idea would be to participate in activities and hobbies you find very interesting. You can include physical activities in your routine every day.

​Other important self-care tips include:

  • Pay attention to your sleep
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Develop robust bedtime habits
  • Remember to eat an adequate and healthy diet
  • Develop stress management habits
  • Practice relaxation techniques such as mantra, meditation, yoga, and chants

A clear mind and a rested body can help solve many issues. It is important to take self-care seriously if you want to be a successful worker. Your needs and feelings require maximum attention.

How to improve employee resilience

Resilience at work begins with managers and employers. One of the critical factors to a company’s success is that employers must understand how to improve employee resilience. Understanding this fact will lead to benefits like maximum productivity and better output. The following are the ways you can improve an employee’s resilience.

1. Set a Positive Example

An encouraging workplace should have leaders who demonstrate what they preach. When employees see this trait, they will learn. Workers will embrace the positive example you have set as a leader. Setting this example will motivate employees and strengthen them in the quest to improve their resilience. To achieve this feat as a leader, face challenges without exercising any fear, establish workplace priorities, and constructively manage stress.

2. Organize Relevant Work Training and Courses

Organizing seminars, training, and workshops that give your workers the proper knowledge and skill to handle various tasks as they come.

​These seminars and courses can teach soft skills such as:

  • stress management
  • proactive thinking
  • creative thinking
  • problem-solving
  • research

An excellent way to achieve this goal is by scouting experts to motivate your staff and teach them everyday working skills. You may also consider letting your employees and team members create presentations or take on projects to establish how well they manage difficulties. You can also discuss the basis of resilience and hard work. During staff meetings, you can discuss why resilience is important at work and share examples of showing resilience at work.

Here are more professional development ideas.

3. Understand the Needs of Your Employees

To build a resilient culture, companies need to understand their employees’ needs and create an environment where they can thrive. One way to accomplish this goal is by actively listening to employees. Regular surveys, feedback sessions, and one-on-one conversations can provide insights into what challenges employees face and what support they require. This open communication helps leaders identify areas that need improvement and tailor their strategies to address specific needs. Additionally, seeking input from employees when making decisions that affect them creates a sense of ownership and empowers them to contribute to the company’s growth.

Companies can also foster a resilient culture by offering professional development opportunities. By recognizing that employees want to learn and grow, companies can provide relevant training, workshops, and courses that align with employees’ aspirations. This technique enhances workers’ skills and shows that the company values their personal and professional development. Moreover, providing resources for mental and emotional well-being, such as counseling services or wellness programs, acknowledges the importance of a balanced and healthy work life. By understanding these diverse needs and offering tailored solutions, companies can demonstrate their commitment to supporting employees in their journey to resilience.

4. Acknowledge Failures

Acknowledging failures is an excellent way to help your employees build resilience at work. Whenever you recognize the failures of the company, manager, or team, you encourage the workforce to own up to their errors and find solutions. Acknowledging failures ensures that you make room for encouragement. Where necessary, motivate your workers to do better and move past failure. With this strategy, you let your workers know all employees are prone to committing errors. You can encourage your employees to see failures as a lesson, not a definition of their skills and capacity.

5. Improve the Work Environment

Whether you operate in a physical location or virtual office, always look for a way to improve your team’s work environment. When possible, flexibility and independence are essential. You should try not to micromanage employees that are working productively. It is important to accommodate a change in process that can improve an employee’s working experience.

As the boss, give compensation for hard work. Also, give support and access to necessary information and data that may help your employees be more effective.

Check out this guide to creating a positive work environment.

6. Give Access to Necessary Information

Data and files showing past solutions to tasks are valuable for workers. Where necessary and possible, allow workers access to these files. Except when you are dealing with sensitive information, workers in any field or team should be able to access general reports. Also, open up access to data from other industry businesses.

7. Be Fair, Flexible, and Free

You should be considerate about what you expect from workers. As an employer or team leader, look for ways to improve work policies, expectations, and hours. If you are too concerned about driving your employees to success, then you may notice increased burnout, affecting overall productivity and outcome.

8. Create a Resilient Culture

There are many layers in the organization’s culture, including trust, accountability, purpose, and empowerment standards. A company’s comprehensive statement that reveals its support and dedication toward resilience can help foster a resilient culture. You should consider an open and trusting style of management. A good idea would be to organize special training for your managers and team leaders to help them know why supporting staff’s mental and overall welfare is crucial. It may not be enough if you only make the announcement without action. You should show actionable commitment and communicate with your workers regularly.

Here are more ways to improve company culture.

9. Offer Incentives to Volunteers

Workplace volunteering serves as an avenue for employees to move out of their comfort zones. You can help employees build their resilience when you let them take on a new task or a challenging project. For workers who volunteer, offer incentives. These incentives can make your employees enthusiastic about taking on new challenges. You may offer paid time off or some gift item for workers who effortlessly complete volunteer work.

Read about employee volunteer programs.

10. Provide Outlets for Stress

Companies play a big role in helping employees handle stress and become stronger. For instance, firms can offer yoga or meditation sessions to help employees relax. Having quiet places where employees can take short breaks also helps reduce stress. It is important for companies to encourage employees to talk about their problems with mentors or bosses. Workshops that teach simple ways to manage stress can give employees tools to handle stress at work and in their personal lives. Letting employees work flexibly, like from home, can also help reduce stress by letting them balance work and personal stuff. By taking these steps, companies show they care and help employees manage stress better.

Reducing stress helps employees feel better and makes the workplace more productive. When employees have ways to deal with stress, they can handle challenges more effectively. This mindset is good for employees’ mental health and how well they do their jobs. A workplace that cares about reducing stress shows it cares about employees’ whole well-being. This engagement makes employees happier with their jobs, boosts their morale, and keeps them more interested in their work. As a result, employees can handle their jobs better, help the company more, and still have a good balance between work and their personal lives.

Check out examples of virtual team stress relief activities.

Conclusion

Every worker is bound to face challenges at work. Challenges tend to weigh you down and can even alter your productivity. However, maintaining resilience at work can give you a way out and help you recover from big falls. While resilience may not prevent challenges from happening, it will help you find solutions. Therefore, you should practice resilience and constantly prepare for the worst days.

Next, check out our lists of internal communication tips, company culture books, and books on change management.

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FAQ: Resilience at work

Here are frequently asked questions about how to develop resilience at work.

What is workplace resilience?

Workplace resilience refers to the ability to manage pressure and challenges arising positively. Every employee must learn this crucial trait if they genuinely wish to succeed.

How to develop resilience at work?

There are different ways an individual can develop resilience at work. You can connect yourself to others, make the best use of your day, maintain self-care, and be proactive.

How can you improve employees' resilience?

You can improve employees’ experience in many ways. You can set a positive example, organize relevant work training and courses, and provide outlets for stress.

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Author:

People & Culture Director at teambuilding.com.
Grace is the Director of People & Culture at TeamBuilding. She studied Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University, Information Science at East China Normal University and earned an MBA at Washington State University.

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