What does it mean to be resilient? Resilience is known as the ability to "bounce back" when encountering set backs. While resilience is typically viewed as a personal trait, it is also a team trait. Given the current pandemic, teams are constantly facing work environments that are complex and ever-changing. This makes team resiliency a crucial factor in the workplace.
Leaders can shape and develop resilience in a team to help employees better cope with stress and unexpected challenges in the workplace. By proactively shaping the team's resilience, members are able to better withstand and overcome difficulties while sustaining performance and cohesion of the team.
Here are 5 ways leaders can develop resilient teams:
1. Checklists and Guides
There will be some common but minor difficulties and stressors that employees might face at work. To help them to deal with these challenges, providing checklists and guides will be useful as there will be something for them to refer to and not feel lost in the moment. When employees have the right tools to overcome their challenges at work, it helps them to develop resilience.
These tools can include the standard operating procedures for the workplace for new employees, or simply tips for troubleshooting in the workplace. Having these procedures written down and having it accessible for employees means that the team can efficiently complete these simple tasks without stressing out over it. In return, they can spend more time dealing with bigger challenges in their work.
During times of stress and uncertainty, employees will look to their leaders for guidance and clarity. When there is regular, honest communication between leaders and team members, it forms the bedrock of a resilient team. This inspires resilience among members as they will be able to trust and have confidence in their leaders. Having a direct, clear communication channel also ensures that everyone understands the next steps of the process when there is changes made to the workplace.
3. Social Connections
One of the factors in creating a resilient and productive team is to have a strong social support system. When there is a challenging project or deadline that the team is rushing for, everyone will be focused on getting things done. However, in the long run, this might result in a lost of social bonding among team members when a team is too focused on only producing results.
Instead, leaders need to invest in facilitating team connections, such as taking the time out to celebrate wins and acknowledging successes of the team. Team building activities also helps to bring members together and promote positive team collaboration. This brings me to my next point.
Conducting team resilience training is another way to develop resilience of any team. Resilience training is designed to develop a group understanding among team members. This includes team building activities that helps to cultivate a sense of unity and camaraderie among team members. Hence, when faced with a setback, they will have the ability and motivation to overcome it together as a team. Ultimately, this helps to build resilience in teams.
5. Workplace Culture
Last but not least, workplace culture is important in promoting resilience in a team. As a start, the leader should demonstrate behaviours that promotes resilience. Such behaviours include openly sharing bad news, maintaining composure during times of stress, offering support for employees before, during, and after difficult times.
By being a role model, employees will feel more supported and encouraged to speak up about their challenges. At the same time, they will be more inclined to adopt these healthy practices in dealing with stress. Overall, this will help to develop a more resilient team in the workplace.