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How To Train A Team To Be Resilient

Team Building, Workplace Productivity, Experiential Learning, Business Articles, Workplace Wellbeing, Remote Working

With changes afoot for many companies as Covid-19 continues to change the way business is done, resilience is something every team needs to draw on. A powerful and positive trait to have in all circumstances, here’s how to harness resilience among team members.

Resilience is often a term talked about when businesses go through difficult times, and the impact of Covid-19 is making companies look at how resilient they are. After all, the very definition of ‘resilience’ is the capability to recover quickly from adversity.

Yet resilience should not just be thought of in response to tough times. Resilient teams work more cohesively and innovatively – with the utmost trust and commitment to each other and the business as a whole.

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Training a team to be resilient is subtler than solely running a training course; it’s about implementing meaningful changes to how work is organised, discussed and completed. Here are some key areas to create more resilient teams.

Prioritise Team Work

To be resilient, teams need to work cohesively together, and not as collectives of individuals. To achieve this, every project needs a strong managerial steer and clarity on which individual is responsible for different tasks. Many teams do not break work down into such minute detail because it often seems obvious who is responsible for what. Yet doing so becomes a constant reminder that individuals are part of something bigger than themselves. As tasks get completed and a project is eventually delivered, individuals will feel a sense of their achievement as a team.

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Share Knowledge & Skills

Sometimes a perceived lack of resilience or cohesion is due to a lack of knowledge about different team members’ particular skills and expertise. People have a lot more to offer than their job titles state, and their broader range of skills should be shared and celebrated among the team. Find ways to get team members talking about what else they can do, or use intranet profiles to tease this information out. From knowledge of other languages and former careers in other sectors, to having a knack with small talk – this can all be helpful in both delivering good work and building team rapport. Realising the sheer breadth of experience and skills that sit within a team makes everyone more adaptable to challenges that come with change.

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Verbalise Success

Recognising when teams have done excellent work or achieved a common goal is important for morale, loyalty and general recognition. All of these things contribute to team resilience too – because it helps teams feel more connected and able to appreciate they can do important work together. This can be built on even further by organising group sessions specifically to discuss when teams have been resilient and bounced back from difficult situations. During times of uncertainty, it is important for teams to remember that there have been previous times of difficulty too, but things have worked out fine in the long run. Looking at one or two examples of how the team managed to turn a project or difficult situation around – and how they did it – can bring a positive and proactive attitude to current times of difficulty.

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Communicate Openly

Resilience is centred on trust, meaning that resilient teams must be able to talk openly with each other and with their superiors. Ensuring there are channels in place for open conversation – and knowing that difficult topics do not have to be avoided – is important for every team. One-to-one meetings, team meetings or an open-door policy with a manager are all tools for ensuring concerns and worries about uncertainty can be aired. A medium for posing questions to senior management team members can also be beneficial, and could be answered in a monthly blog or video message that staff can watch and engage with.

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Building resilient teams should be a priority in times such as these, when Covid-19 has changed many previous ‘norms’. But resilient teams should also be nurtured during better times too. After all, resilient teams ensure companies thrive – and not just survive.

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