Resilience = recharge + recover


“Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving; we get stronger and more resilient” 

Dr. Steve Marble

The emails pile up, the inbox grows and employees soldier on. Even the best employees feel depleted and berate themselves for not being ‘tougher’ and doing better – and it’s no different in the board room. It’s a vicious circle. Hard to see the wood from the trees when demands are coming in from all angles, obscuring the strategic issues behind a mound of operational challenges. Performance-driven cultures can perpetuate an ever-increasing spiral of attainment where the benchmark seems to get higher every year and the rally cry of ‘smarter not harder’ becomes an empty mantra when it seems neither smarter nor harder will do. Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz have written, if you have too much time in the performance zone, you need more time in the recovery zone, otherwise you risk burnout.
Shawn Anchor and Michelle Gielan have published some fascinating insights into the nature of resilience and what this means in the (overworked) workplace. They highlight that resilience tends to be viewed as a ‘macho’ quality, the image of a heroic figure toughing it out. It’s a common trait in business owners and senior executives who feel driven – rightly passionate about what they do. But rather narrowly focused in their belief that toughing it out leads to success. However, research has found that there is a direct correlation between lack of recovery and loss of productivity. Estimates are that lack of recovery is costing U.S. companies $62 billion a year in lost productivity. Overwork and exhaustion are the opposite of resilience. Toughing it out needs a different frame.
Anchor and Gielan say the key to resilience is trying really hard, then stopping, recovering, and then trying again. This conclusion is based on biology. When the body is out of alignment from overworking, we waste a vast amount of mental and physical resources trying to return to balance before we can move forward.
So how do we recover and build resilience in our business? If you really want to build resilience, you can start by strategically stopping. Give yourself the resources to be tough. This might mean asking a fresh pair of eyes to come into your business to view the challenge from another angle whilst you pause and recover. Because we haven’t been toughing it out in your particular business, gigCMO can recharge your business whilst you recharge your batteries. You want your business to be around for a long time so let us help you with resilience = recharge + recover.