Strategic Futurists; Value Systems Specialists


Why the LAST Thing You Want Your Organisation to be is 'Resilient'

Wednesday 10 August 2016

I'm surprised at how prevalent the idea of 'resilience' is in the organisational and leadership landscape. It's as if the key ingredient to success is 'resilience'. But I think the reality of what is needed is SUBSTANTIALLY different. Taken to the logical conclusion, the last thing most organisations need is to be 'resilient'. The problem I believe lies in the language leaders are using when it comes to setting a framework for how a business goes about doing what it does. Instead

I think most leaders don't want resilience but DO want 'adaptability'.

The word 'resile' means to 'bounce back'. In fact it goes further in that it means to 'return to the original shape'. Resilience then is the 'rubber band' approach. No matter what happens, return back to your original shape. I'm sure you can now see the problem that language like resilience creates. In times of change returning BACK to the original shape means you fall further and futher behind.

When leaders talk about resilience I hope that what they are doing wrong is just mislabelling their desires. That might be an amber light flashing but then at least the problem is only over terminology rather than maintaing course to certain redundancy. What I think they want, what I hope they will instead pursue, is Adaptability - the flexibility of behaviours and responses to CHANGED CONDITIONS. Do that and you can succeed. Stay resilient and you'll fall even further behind!

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