Benefits of Resilience Training for Employees
Understanding Resilience: What It Is and Why It Matters for Employees
Resilience is the ability to navigate adversity and trauma and is critical for ensuring mental wellbeing and productivity in the workplace. It is a dynamic and ongoing process, influenced by a variety of individual, social, and environmental factors. While some people can appear more resilient than others, resilience is a skill that can be learned and practiced over time.
Why Does Resilience Matter for Employees?
Resilience supports employees to handle workplace challenges, maintain their mental and physical wellbeing, and ultimately perform better at work. Employees with higher levels of resilience are more engaged, more committed to their work, and are less likely to experience burnout.
Moreover, resilience is particularly important in the current climate, where employees are facing economic uncertainty. In this context, resilience training can help employees to navigate these challenges with more adaptability, creativity, and positivity.
How Can Businesses Support Employee Resilience?
Businesses can support employee resilience in several ways. Firstly, they can offer resilience training to support employees to develop skills such as emotional regulation, problem-solving, and positive self-talk. Training can also raise awareness of mental health issues, reduce stigma, and encourage employees to seek support when needed.
Secondly, businesses can create a supportive and inclusive workplace culture that prioritises mental wellbeing and promotes work-life balance. This may involve providing flexible working arrangements, promoting physical activity and healthy eating, and offering mental health training and resources.
Thirdly, businesses can support resilience at a team level, by encouraging communication, collaboration, and social support among colleagues. For example, team-building exercises, social events, and regular check-ins with managers can help to build trust and foster a sense of belonging.
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The Impact of Resilience Training on Employee Wellbeing and Performance
Resilience training can equip employees with coping mechanisms for dealing with stressors both in and out of work. When we experience acute stress, it becomes difficult to focus and keep up with day-to-day responsibilities. Resilience training equips staff with skills such as cognitive flexibility, and emotional regulation. With such skills, employees can manage stressors as they arise, helping them to maintain good mental health.
Data from a study by the American Psychological Association (APA) indicated that employees who undergo resilience training record significantly lower levels of stress, anxiety and depression compared to those who do not. Such a reduction in stress levels can significantly enhance employee wellbeing, giving them the platform to thrive in their roles.
The benefits of resilience training also extend to employee performance. Resilient individuals are better able to adapt to change, recover from setbacks and perform under pressure. Under periods of high-stress, employees who have attended resilience training are more likely to stay calm and focused, enhancing their ability to thrive and find solutions.
Improved cognitive flexibility and emotional regulation as a result of resilience training, provides the foundation for the development of soft skills in communication, problem-solving and decision-making. Employees with strong soft skills are better able to work with others, generate new ideas and make informed decisions that benefit the organisation.
Lastly, resilience training reduces the risk of burnout, which could otherwise have a negative impact on employee performance, imapcting motivation, productivity and ultimately creating detachment from the job. Resilience training can give employees the tools they need to manage their stresses, improve work-life balance and perform to the best of their abilities.
Evidence-Based Strategies for Building Resilience Among Employees
Building resilience is an essential part of promoting mental health and wellbeing for employees. As a mental health business operating in the UK, we have found that using evidence-based strategies is crucial for enhancing resilience in individuals. Strategies for improving resilience include:
- Develop Problem-Solving Skills:
Poor problem-solving can lead to emotional dysregulation and increase sensitivity to stress. Employers can provide training and coaching to improve decision-making, and support staff to practice this. By developing problem-solving skills, employees can become more resilient and adaptable in the face of adversity.
- Develop Emotional Intelligence:
Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognise and regulate your emotions. It is an important skill as it helps employees to remain calm and focused in challenging situations. Employers can provide emotional intelligence training to help employees manage high-stress situations or when dealing with difficult colleagues or clients.
- Develop Positive Thinking Habits:
Positive self-talk is a powerful tool for building resilience. Empowering employees to develop positive self-talk can help them to meet their needs in the face of stress. Employers can facilitate this by actively promoting a culture that prioritises wellbeing; practising mindfulness and gratitude, and providing resources for employees to learn positive thinking strategies.
- Encourage Social Support Networks:
Social support networks are essential for promoting resilience. Employers can facilitate the development of these networks by organising team-building opportunities, offering social events for their team, and promoting a culture of collaboration and support.
- Encourage Self-Care:
Self-care is important for resilience. Encouraging employees to take breaks, exercise, and prioritise their mental wellbeing can support them to maintain a healthy work-life balance and build resilience over time.
Role of Leadership in Promoting Resilience and Reducing Stress at Work
Leadership needs to play a crucial role in promoting resilience in the workplace. The following are some key reasons why leadership’s involvement is vital in promoting resilience and reducing stress at work.
- Set the Tone
The attitude of leadership sets the tone for the entire organisation. Leaders need to lead by example in demonstrating resilience by engaging in self-care, promoting open communication and providing support so that employees don’t feel isolated or unheard.
- Foster Well-being
Effective leaders prioritise communication, learning from feedback and taking suitable measures to ensure the work environment is conducive to maintaining a healthy work-life balance. Leaders must recognise the root causes of work-related stress, be empathetic towards employees and introduce initiatives such as flexible working hours and regular breaks.
- Boost Employee Engagement
Leadership plays a vital role in enhancing employee engagement levels by empowering and supporting staff members. When employees feel valued and supported, they are better able to overcome challenges. Additionally, strong leadership can influence employee loyalty, reduce absenteeism and result in increased retention rates.
- Create a Culture of Resilience
Creating a culture of resilience at work starts with leadership setting the tone and being proactive in promoting resilience. Effective leaders empower employees, and provide them with the tools, resources and support needed to manage stressors effectively.
- Address Issues Head-On
Due to the negative stigma surrounding mental health, employees don’t always feel able to be honest with management when they are struggling with their mental health. Leaders need to be proactive in creating open channels of communication where employees can voice their concerns; and offer coaching, training and resources to support those in need.
Overcoming Common Barriers to Resilience: Tips for Employees and Organisations
Below, we will explore barriers to resilience and provide tips on how to overcome them.
- Lack of Awareness
The first and most significant barrier is a lack of awareness. Many individuals believe that resilience is an innate character trait and underestimate their own abilities to navigate challenges and overlook evidence of their own resilience. Organisations can provide resilience training to employees to help them develop a positive mindset and techniques to manage stress.
- Poor Support System
Another key barrier to resilience is a poor social support. Employees that feel isolated and unsupported are at risk of experiencing anxiety, depression, and burnout, and less likely to seek support when they need it. This can make it difficult to navigate challenging situations effectively, leading to a decline in mental health and wellbeing.
To overcome this, organisations can encourage the development of supportive and positive relationships in the workplace and offer employee assistance programs to provide confidential counselling and support services for employees in need.
- Lack of Self-Care
Employees can neglect their physical and mental health in favour of pursuing career progression, leading to burnout and other health-related issues. Lack of self-care can magnify workplace problems, intensifying any stress and anxiety.
Managers should encourage employees need to prioritise their health and wellbeing. They can do this by ensuring they take regular breaks, offer mindfulness and exercise breaks. Organisations can also provide access to wellness programs.
- Resistance to Change
Lastly, resistance to change is a significant barrier to resilience. Individuals can struggle with change, leading to feelings of stress and anxiety. Organisations can provide change management training to employees, helping employees to develop the skills and mindset needed to navigate change effectively, leading to increased resilience and adaptability in the face of challenges.
Measuring the Effectiveness of Resilience Training: Key Metrics and Evaluation Techniques
Resilience training can equip employees with the skills they need to manage stress and maintain their mental health and wellbeing. It is necessary to measure the effectiveness of resilience training to ensure that it is meeting the business outcomes.
There are several key metrics and evaluation techniques that can be used to measure the effectiveness of resilience training. Here are some of the most important:
- Absenteeism and Presenteeism Rates: One way to measure the impact of resilience training is to look at absenteeism and presenteeism rates – i.e., how often employees are absent from work, or present but not fully engaging. A reduction in these rates following training can indicate that the training has been effective.
- Employee Engagement: Employee engagement surveys can be used to measure changes in engagement levels before and after resilience training.
- Self-Reported Wellbeing: Surveys can be used as self-assessment tools for employees to evaluate their mental health and wellbeing. Surveys can be compared before and after training to for direct comparison.
- Turnover Rates: High turnover rates can be a sign of low job satisfaction and poor mental health among employees. By tracking turnover rates before and after resilience training, businesses can see if the training has helped to reduce turnover by improving retention.
- Productivity Measures: Finally, productivity measures such as output, quality, and timeliness can be used to assess the impact of resilience training. If employees are better equipped to manage stress and maintain their mental health and wellbeing, they are likely to perform better on the job.
Creating a Resilient Work Culture: Best Practices and Case Studies from Top Companies
Creating a resilient work culture is vital for any organisation. It’s a culture that helps employees develop sustainable coping mechanisms to deal with workplace challenges, uncertainty, and the pressures of the modern workforce. Studies suggest that a resilient work culture can promote productivity, employee well-being, and organisational success.
The best practices for building a resilient workplace culture are:
- Addressing Mental Health
Employers should prioritise the mental health of their employees. This means creating an environment that fosters psychological safety, where employees feel safe to be honest about their mental health without fear of discrimination or reprisal.
- Promoting Work-Life Balance
Encouraging work-life balance can help reduce employee burnout, improve job satisfaction, and boost team morale. Employers can provide flexible working hours, generous time off, and support mental health days.
- Encouraging Open Communication
Open communication is crucial to building a resilient work culture. Employers should encourage honest, respectful, and open communication between managers and employees. Employees should feel comfortable voicing their concerns, asking for help, or providing feedback on company policies.
- Prioritising Employee Well-Being
Prioritising employee well-being means providing opportunities for personal and professional growth, ensuring employees feel valued, and providing adequate resources for mental health support.
Case Studies from Top Companies
Google is known for its innovative approach to employee management, and their approach to resiliency in the workplace is no exception. To prioritise employee well-being, Google provides their employees with massage rooms, mindfulness classes, healthy team meals, and meditation and relaxation spaces. Google also offers a range of mental health support services, including counseling and therapy.
Zappos’ focus on employee well-being has earned them a renowned reputation for nurturing a resilient work culture. Their approach to building a resilient work culture involves several programs, such as offering financial wellness classes, providing access to mental health professionals, and offering on-site meditation and yoga classes. Zappos also offers “culture fitting” workshops, where employees are encouraged to express their individuality and creativity.
Airbnb’s remote work culture necessitated a resilient approach to employee well-being, and they have done just that. Airbnb offers its employees unlimited vacation time, presents each employee with a £2,000 annual employee travel stipend, and provides weekly exercise classes.
Creating a resilient work culture is essential for promoting employee well-being, improving job satisfaction, and boosting team morale. By adopting best practices like addressing mental health, promoting work-life balance and open communication, prioritising employee well-being, and learning from case studies, companies can create a resilient work environment that benefits both employees and organisations.
At PMAC, we recognise the need for mental health and well-being in the workplace. Our resilience training courses are designed to equip employees with essential coping skills to help them navigate the challenges of the modern workforce. Contact us today to learn more.
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