The Indispensable 10-Letter Word – Resilience

Resilience

The 2014 Winter Olympics were a fantastic example of this indispensable 10-Letter word in action, across countries, events, and athletes.  It is practical, essential, and the foundation of proactive career development as well as the foundation of life – it is Resilience.

Strategy, planning, execution are all integral to career development and the job search process.  However, there will come a time when the plan breaks down, the strategy must be revisited, the referral contacts aren’t panning out, you may not even want to get out of bed.  There will come a time in the process when you feel low, defeated, uninspired, fearful, because career transition is complex and challenging.  Career change challenges our preconceived notion of ourselves, our self-definition, our perspective on what it means to be successful.

Every day hiring decisions are made and candidates are not extended offers because of their inability to show up with enthusiasm and confidence.  When a hiring decision maker meets with a candidate who is lackluster in conversation, seemingly disengaged, or displays little authentic personality, the candidate is ruled out, even in the face of a solid skill set and experience base.  Often times the feedback, if any is provided, sounds something like “not a good fit.”

Resilience is an ability to bounce back with energy and optimism in the face of disappointment, adversity, significant challenge, and it can be built, cultivated, and relied upon by us all – here are simply a handful of methods.

    • New Learning – identify learning prospects professionally, personally, or both.
    • Establish Routines, Goals, Plans – control that which you can and step away from that which is out of your control.  Accept that change comes to us, wanted or not.
    • Take Action – take action every day, big or small, towards your goals and plans and enlist resources such as a professional coach who can help you create a plan to build resilience.
    • Be Self-Responsible – identify and take care of yourself in the ways that most energize you.
    • Get Connected – utilize your support be it mentors, colleagues, friends, family and do not become stuck in isolation.
    • Service – be helpful to someone else.
    • Inspiration – immerse yourself in books, podcasts, videos, magazines that inspire you.
    • Perspective – remember that you have possibilities, opportunities, and choices for changing your circumstances.  Avoid assumptions and stay curious.

The importance of resilience doesn’t end upon your next hire.  Resilience will become your best asset during the first 90 days of a new role, during times when your leadership is tested, during times when your organization encounters obstacles, during times of personal and professional crisis.

I’ve seen it time and time again, clients who are at a low point, but gather up the strength to get back up, take a deep breath, re-strategize, and take daily steps towards moving their career forward with energy, a fundamental belief in themselves, and the possibility for the opportunities ahead.  Forward movement then happens, consistently.  The pace of movement isn’t always as quick as clients expect as change takes time, experimentation and the planting many seeds.  Resilience is a belief in yourself, skills, abilities, talents and all that makes you uniquely you.

Lisa Montgomery is a Career and Leadership Coach to driven professionals and business owners.  Gone are the days of putting your head down, working hard and waiting to get noticed – drive your career with intention while focusing on results, resilience, and reinvention.  www.lisa-montgomery.com

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