Resilience Is the New Critical Success Factor

Resilience is going to determine the quality of your reopening, your first mover status, and whether your new normal will be a success.

Remember ‘synergy’ and the need to be ‘synergistic’? This is better.

Resilience is a multi-faceted construct that links your Perseverance, Purpose, Principles, Passion, and Process.

It’s the single most important factor that will determine whether you can take a punch, or a shock to your senses, and stay on your feet.

However, resilience comes at a cost; for it can only be developed and strengthened through adversity, discipline, and sacrifice.

Covid-19 has made many of us more resilient.

Perseverance. You have to be willing to fight the fear of failure, and to learn from your mistakes. Elite military units share a similar training philosophy: Expose candidates to situations where they’ll frequently fail, and continue to do so over a protracted period of time. Often, the difference between candidates who succeed versus those who don’t is not a function of mental or physical ability – it’s a function of the candidate’s resilience.

Purpose. You have to believe in something greater than yourself - and in others, not yourself. Resilience is a function of faith and your sense of purpose. This is one of the reasons why self-serving individuals and organizations are rarely successful over the long run. When things go wrong, the weak look to blame others, and waste opportunities to learn from their mistakes.

Principles. Your sense of purpose needs to be aligned with your principles. Here we should add a moral and ethical qualifier, for you can have a sense of purpose and supporting principles, yet be profoundly evil – consider organized crime and terrorists.

Passion. Passion is the fuel that sustains your sense of purpose and illuminates your principles. You have to love what you’re doing; who you’re doing it with; and, who you’re doing it for. People can easily sense whether you’re passionate about your sense of purpose, and whether your principles are genuine and authentic.

Process. Resilient individuals and organizations tend to have a simple decision-making process that is universal and can be applied to any critical leadership or stewardship role. By having a flexible planning framework they’re able to act with confidence even when all the facts are not known, and a greater capacity to pivot when new facts become known. A resilient operating model increases your ability to be decisive, agile, and adaptive and of doing the right thing, at the right time, and with the right people.

Resilience also is a primary factor in describing the differences between leaders and managers. Leaders are comfortable dealing with uncertainty, and have learned not to become incapacitated by fear. Managers, on the other hand, are less resilient. They seek ways to mitigate uncertainty by relying on policies and procedures, suppressing feelings and feedback, and avoiding activities that carry risk and the potential of failure.

There’s no easy way to become more resilient. And because it’s so tough, it has become the new critical success factor for every worthwhile endeavor. As you begin to reopen and pursue your new normal, resilience is going to be the primary factor in determining your level of success and your capacity to serve others.

Related: 55 Critical Questions Financial Advisors Need to Answer for the New Normal