Let’s be clear: resilience doesn’t mean making your business immune to something happening. It means you have the flexibility to adapt and come out the other side. It can help to think of resilience as something that rests on three pillars:
- Acceptance: the ability to attune to the reality of what’s happening
- Purpose: The ability to maintain a clear sense of what your business is, what it does, and who it serves
- Flexibility: The ability of your business to bend and stretch resources to meet a challenge — as opposed to breaking down
Businesses today should be looking to build up those pillars, systems, and processes. The end result should be a ‘total experience’ that is more resilient and more able to meet the needs of customers and employees in both good times and bad. There are two key missteps to avoid along the way, however.
The first is isolation. Businesses naturally fall into different departments, and every department will have its own set of risks to respond to, but these can’t be dealt with individually. No department is an island, and moving forward in isolation creates the likelihood that a solution won’t work properly or isn’t comprehensive enough to fix the overall problem the business is facing. The result can be failure to help employees and customers as intended or, worse still, generate even more friction in those experiences.
The second risk is well-intentioned but potentially just as harmful. Businesses need to be cautious not to over-prepare for risks and either waste resources on very remote eventualities or spend so much time on building resilience that they no longer have time to innovate — a significant risk factor of its own.
For businesses looking to avoid those stumbling blocks, secure resilience, and maintain experience, it helps to get back to those three pillars of resilience mentioned above: how can we increase awareness, build in flexibility, and maintain purpose in uncertain times?