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January
25, 2021

4 min read

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Like people, companies feel, they have a soul, and they need the appropriate resources in the midst of crises and limiting moments to get ahead. Even if they are well led and managed with skill, it is possible to emerge strengthened from those hinge experiences in the organizational sphere.

From the field of human behavioral sciences, resilience is the ability of a person to overcome extremely difficult traumatic circumstances to adapt more effectively to high-risk situations.

It is not about resisting what challenges the moment , but about acting positively despite the difficulties, and being able to transform that experience into a constructive one, to forge a new level of learning in life.

7 characteristics of resilience

In organizational resilience processes, these seven characteristics can be applied to model a new culture that will be marked by transformation and flexibility:

  • Introspection: having the ability in the company as a whole to look internally, ask difficult and challenging questions, and answer them honestly in order to have realistic views of the situation.
  • Independence: refers to the ability to dissociate and maintain an emotional distance from the real problem that is experienced in the company, without isolating or denying it.
  • Interaction: being able to establish satisfactory ties in interpersonal relationships within the organization, knowing that the conflicting emotions will always be present.
  • Initiative: to take charge of problems and have the ability to manage them appropriately.
  • Creativity: to order chaos and set goals.
  • Humor: focus on what is important and relativize stressful aspects, being positive in relationships and actions in the company in times of crisis.
  • Consciousness and values: from the person and the organization, use these pillars to recover from challenges.

These essential components that allow people to better cope with the challenges of the moment are often neglected in business. Closeness, words of support, recognition, awareness of the seriousness of things versus those that are not so serious, are other fundamental aspects to harmonize the team that, naturally, will be under the pressure of uncertainty.

5 pillars to create organizational resilience

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For resilience to emerge in each leader and collaborators, it is necessary to stimulate it: it is not enough just to focus on solving problems, since the relational, linking, is essential to do so effectively.

Here are these recommendations for resilient companies:

1. Do not isolate yourself and foster relationships

Isolated teams do not generate solutions, which is precisely what is required at extreme moments. It is recommended to hold frequent meetings without overwhelming, maintain a constant flow of information and create catalytic spaces for emotions. Also encourage mutual support.

2. Avoid transmitting hopelessness

At critical moments, leaders are scrutinized by employees. They are precisely the ones who will cascade down business needs, so that each one assumes their part of collaboration with the process. His hopeful spirit is more than indispensable, since discouragement spreads very quickly and hinders the virtuous process that is sought: to get ahead.

3. Motivate and incentivize small goals

Far from being collapsed, companies need to provoke their resilient spirit through action, for example, facing possible projects to achieve and establishing small goals that are sustained over time. In many cases, in my work I propose to the teams from different areas that they design a plan of reasonable goals to put to the consideration of the rest.

4. Create an appropriate environment

In the midst of tension, the human factor and feelings are often forgotten. A decisive role of the leader of any resilient company is knowing how to build an environment that shelters, contains and cares for its staff. This is achieved through affective communication, leadership that articulates more confidence in solving problems, permanently stimulating, and fostering collaborative leadership.

5. Establish phases of the resilience process

Just as in individuals, companies go through several stages until they discover the hidden potential that is activated in resilience. There is a first phase of attack or alert, when the crisis appears; Coping, the first reaction that is generally emotional – it can be with denial, anger, sadness-; concern, marked by anguish; adaptation: where, together, they begin to propose an action plan; resilience: when the internal resources are found in each person, and in all teams, to overcome adversity. Finally, there is an impulse to move forward, to capitalize on the experience, which, in turn, marks the beginning of a new stage in the culture of each company.

As we see, the role of the highest management of the company and of each leader is decisive so that this awakening of resilience is collective, and helps to rebuild, in the shortest possible time, what may have been broken during the crisis.

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