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Do you have what it takes to be a Resilient Leader?

In this demanding world if you run a company or are leading people, one of the critical skills you need to have is Resilience.  So, what is a resilient leader?

The definition of resilience is defined as the ability to recover from setbacks, adapt well to change, and keep going in the face of adversity. (Harvard Business Review)


7 Ways of Resilient Leadership

In Forbes 2017, Joseph Folkman said there are seven ways to develop and demonstrate resilient leadership.  This is how Jewel sees and develops these seven ways of resilient leadership.

Communicate Powerfully:  This is where Resilient Leaders understand the importance of, and have the ability to, communicate clearly and consistently, the direction, strategies, vision and goals.

Are Coachable:  Being able to hear from others about how they lead and deal with business, team and people pressures is a very valuable quality of a Resilient Leader.  It’s about asking for feedback (however challenging), reflecting on that feedback and modifying behaviour or developing skills based on the feedback given – be that from a coach, mentor, or colleagues.

Build Positive/Trusting Relationships:  Resilient Leadership is all about the ability to build relationships; relationships that depend on values such as trust, respect and honesty.

Are Bold Risk Takers:  Resilient Leaders are not afraid to take risks and make bold changes.  They have belief in their own abilities to deal with risk and move forward.

Develop Others:  A critical skill of a Resilient Leader is the ability to develop others through training, coaching and mentoring.  They will see the value in developing others so that individuals reach their true potential.

Champion Change:  Resilient Leaders are enablers of change.  They will champion change and demonstrate their own ability to change when needed.

Are Decisive:  Resilient Leaders have clear criteria for decision making, will make decisions, consider risk and move forward.  If they make the wrong decisions they learn from their mistakes and move forward.


We recently had the pleasure of supporting a Global Leadership Conference for a client’s managers, addressing these seven ways of resilient leadership.  As part of the conference all leaders and managers considered what behaviours and skills they personally needed to address to be able to develop these resilient behaviours in their business.

Qualities of a Resilient Leader

One of the key themes that came up repetitively was Trust.  As part of the Patrick Lencioni session, we explored Trust and how to build it through the power of vulnerability.  In leadership, being vulnerable is okay, and by getting others around you to support you when you are vulnerable actually will build trusting relationships in a team.  This links to Folkman’s point about building positive / trusting relationships in a team.

As I reflect, it leaves me asking the question – to be a more resilient leader, is it more about the individual, or is it about their teams?  I would love to have your thoughts and reflections.

If you would like to explore the support Jewel can offer you and your business in developing Resilient Leaders, give us a call!