Keep Calm and Carry On

It’s easy to see how quickly our stress reaction gets kicked into gear. When the news was announced last week that a majority of Brits voted to opt out of the European Union, the media went into a frenzy, political comparison were made from one side of the “Pond” to the next, and everyone else was checking their 401K balances. “OMG” was screamed around the world even though many people had to Google “Brexit” to see exactly what it meant. It’s challenging enough reacting to stressful situations without having the flames doused by “Chicken Littles” scaring us about the future of civilization. We are surrounded by cortisol junkies intent on making our limbic systems work overtime. Without a “sense of Read More

Going For the Challenge

I’ve received several emails this week with suggestions for today’s RW which can most easily be summarized as Cavs=Resilience. While there are certainly no shortages of resilience stories in sports, this past weekend’s Cleveland Cavalier National Basketball Association championship merits special notice, but not for what you think. Most people will say that the Cavs resilience story was their unprecedented comeback from a 3-1 deficit in the best of 7 series (a never before achieved accomplishment) and that their never-say-die attitude sets them apart from other great teams. I would have another take, however. My resilience perspective would be about LeBron James and his decision to return to Cleveland after having left the Cavaliers in 2010. LeBron was reviled in Read More

Our Resilient Country

( I am repurposing a previously written Resilient Wednesday from last July and am striking out the outdated text from last year’s version and making the updated version in bold text. I’m saddened that I have to repeat this article.) What an amazing country we live in. Just last week this past weekend our nation’s ability to address the worst of us and the best of us came to the forefront. We were tested and will probably pass but we are getting tired of the tests. The horrific shootings in Charleston Orlando were punctuated not with violence and protests, but with prayers, forgiveness and the singing of Amazing Grace by our President “We Shall Overcome” by the Gay Men’s Choir Read More

The Champ: A Different Kind of Resilience

Muhammad Ali never much cared about what other people thought. He knew who he was and what he wanted. He transcended almost everything and his life from pugilist to peacemaker is a testimony to how his power of self-belief was transformative. I don’t believe that Ali was a particularly resilient figure as most people think of resilience with its singular focus on overcoming adversity. You could say, of course, that he was amazingly resilient in how he beat back opponents in the ring and fought the US government in its efforts to deny his conscientious objector status for his refusal to serve in the military during Viet Nam. Certainly, you could say that his innovative “rope-a-dope” strategy that helped his Read More

Buckle Your Seat Belts: It’s Going to Be Bumpy Ride

I am seeing more and more companies adding “resiliency” and its kissing cousin “agility,” to their list of leadership competencies. And it makes sense. Business today is more complex, unpredictable, and decision making is usually ambiguous at best. Organizations cannot afford to stand still while they gather all the information required to make a decision. Sometimes you have to move and then pick up the pieces to see if you’ve won or lost. Consider the transformation that has happened in the airline industry during this millennium. After 9/11 the reality of terrorism created a seismic shift in how they conducted their business. Next came consolidation of all the big airlines followed by a shift to “fees for value” where every Read More