12 Examples of Resilience at Work

Examples of Demonstrating Resilience at Work

Resilience is routinely ranked alongside traditional capabilities such as leadership, communication, and teamwork as the most desirable traits in the workplace. A resilient person can deal better with adversity or challenges than a nonresilient person. Being resilient is a choice that involves how you see yourself, the value you attach to your goals and dreams, and the quality of people around you.

What is Resilience Means?

Resilience is how you master the emotional challenges of your jobs and deal with everyday stresses and uncertainties. It is the ability to persist in a difficult situation or circumstance, overcome challenges, confront and rise above any difficulties, especially those connected with surviving adversity.

It is also about how to respond to the challenges you face at work and beyond. Resilient employees have the grit and determination which they use when faced with adversity or uncertainty — skills that sometimes can be difficult to learn by anyone.

Here are 12 examples of showing resilience at work:

1. Making calculated decisions

Many people know that the road to success is not always smooth. Still, most people are afraid of taking risks because they fear being embarrassed.

But resilient people seek out new opportunities despite the possibility of failing. They take calculated risks rather than play it safe, making conservative decisions or repeatedly holding back their ideas.

For resilient employees, risk-taking is a part of life that helps them grow professionally and achieve their goals.

2. Staying focused in times of change

It’s difficult not to feel anxious when faced with uncertainty at work — especially if you’re used to working in a specific way for many years without any major changes around you.

It can be difficult to adjust once you’ve reached a level of comfort and certainty in your job, but resilient people can stay focused on their goals at work despite sudden changes. They don’t get easily sidetracked by concerns about the future.

Read also: 16 Character Traits of a Hard Worker

3. Thriving as an outsider

Some people can stand out and gain recognition for their ideas because they’re not afraid to find solutions to problems that others wouldn’t think of. And they don’t fear being seen as different from the crowd or outsiders at work.

They don’t shy away from being different — and take advantage of their unconventional mindset to spark change without fear of criticism or rejection.

4. Staying positive

Resilient people stay strong during stressful times. For example, someone promoted into a management position and will take on an extra workload.

Instead of complaining or whining about being overworked, the person will focus on finding ways to make the job as easy as possible. In the end, it makes the person feel satisfied with the work than feeling burdened or overwhelmed.

5. Standing up to toxic behaviors

Toxic coworkers bring down the energy of everyone around them with their bad attitude and negativity.

Resilient people know how important it is to distance themselves from those kinds of people to have a healthy work environment where they feel comfortable being themselves.

If they see a colleague with a toxic personality, they will not avoid that person. And they will let them know about their undesirable behavior and how it affects the work environment.

6. Staying calm during a crisis

While most people would be stressed out when there are too many things to do and very little time to finish, resilient people can keep their cool even when everything is going wrong.

Knowing how to maintain composure in high-pressure situations is a trait of resilient people. For example, an employee may be asked to complete a critical assignment with very little time.

Instead of panicking, the person accepts the challenge and remains calm even if it will be hard to meet the deadline.

7. Keeping a positive outlook

Life is unpredictable, and we’re all bound to face challenges sooner or later. Some people manage to stay optimistic even when they are facing redundancies or change.

They believe everything happens for a reason and understand there are lessons to learn every day in the workplace.

8. Teaming up with others

When you’re passionate about doing something, it’s easy to forget that other people count on you to do your part. Some people understand this and work with others, so their joint efforts lead to success.

They have an innate ability to see the big picture even when their attention is on other tasks or projects.

9. Learning from past experiences

Making mistakes in the workplace is not a rare occurrence, but some people learn from it and move on.

Good employees know that occasionally they are bound to experience disappointment in life, but they view negative situations as opportunities for learning about themselves and others.

One way to learn from your mistakes is by reflecting on how you handled yourself in them, what your weaknesses were, what made you feel discouraged, and why it didn’t work out.

Even if you don’t understand it, just knowing that people have failed before is also valuable information.

10. Handling disappointment skillfully

When something goes wrong at work, it’s normal to experience a certain level of disappointment. But some people can positively use that emotion.

Instead of letting it get the best of them and making irrational decisions, resilient people keep things in perspective.

They’re honest with themselves about why something went wrong while trying not to wallow in self-pity. They also take setbacks as opportunities to learn from them and grow into better employees who are more valuable.

11. Setting healthy boundaries

Resilient people set healthy boundaries with difficult colleagues by keeping a positive attitude, standing up for themselves when needed, and being assertive when necessary.

They don’t allow toxic people to affect them emotionally, nor do they let their negativity rub off on them. Instead, they draw lines in the sand highlighting what is acceptable and what is not to them.

It’s good to let difficult colleagues know that you won’t tolerate their toxic behavior, but it’s important not to get carried away with your stand.

12. Be proactive in resolving problems

When others let things slide, resilient employees proactively address issues (even when dealing with difficult people) by seeking solutions. They don’t sit back expecting things to resolve themselves and then get upset when nothing gets done.


Resilient employees get on with the job in a manner that exudes confidence, not seeking special favors from their bosses. They find solutions and solve problems quickly without bothering others.

They will seek advice and input from others if needed, but they don’t look for approval from management before taking action, a trait that many managers find refreshing.

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