The HR Advisor

What do employees say about their ‘resilience’?

A recently released ‘Global Resilience Diagnostic Report 2016-2017’ compiled the opinions of almost 27,000 professional employees over a period of six years. This report analysed the ‘resilience’ of these employees.  Resilience was defined as “the learned ability to demonstrate bounce, courage, connection and creativity”.

Of the many findings, the report found that for professional employees:

  • 55% worry excessively
  • 50% are hyper vigilant
  • 45% experience distress symptoms
  • 30% have impulse control problems
  • 35% are unable to relax
  • 30% experience excessive work intensity

The report found that over the six year period, levels of relaxation, fitness, intensity and impulse control all declined.  The data also showed a 30% reduction in daily relaxation, which is the basis for physical, emotional and cognitive resilience.

But what does this mean for an employer?  Well, decreased employee resilience can lead to increased absenteeism, presenteeism (coming to work when unwell), workplace conflict and mistakes.  Conversely, employees who display resilience are purposeful, focused and decisive.

So what can be done about this?  Many organisations already have an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which provides access to confidential counselling to assist with employee well being.  Isn’t that enough?

Interestingly, the report highlighted an EAP may be just one piece in a puzzle.  The most effective approach to tackling workplace resilience is one that takes a systematic approach.  One where the CEO and other senior management lead and model workplace well being strategies by, for example, minimising after hours email and phone contact.  One where compassion and respect are provided to each employee, by for example, allowing an employee time to rest after extending themselves.  One where workplace culture is driven by purpose, performance and values.  And one where employees feel comfortable to share risky or new ideas because of culture of trust, support and acceptance of failure.

Further information and a copy of the full report can be assessed here:

Topics: HR Advice