Saturday, February 1, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: "The Art of Resilience" by Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy

individual -v- group
Individual vs. Group (Photo credit: Sean MacEntee)
by Alyssa Gigliotti

Resilience is a valuable guide to effectively rebounding from setbacks and catastrophes.

In today's global marketplace, the ability to weather all types of storms - financial, emotional, physical - is a key skill for leaders and companies.

There are a number of uncontrollable forces that may affect individuals in a negative manner. When systems break down, how do leaders respond and recover?

By detailing developments in science, technology, and social innovations, the authors provide insight into rebounding from hardships, as well as modalities to prevent breakdowns from occurring.

Resilience compares the survival skills of individuals and groups to uncover why some thrive while others perish. It details tools that can be implemented to bounce back and create a strategic plan for the future.

Armed with these tools, leaders can forge ahead in the face of any challenge and emerge unscathed and even stronger. Authors Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy explain that:

• Change and tumult are inevitable, but if coping strategies can be formed to weather change, success can be achieved. Individuals, companies, and systems of business and government must be flexible and adapt to negative circumstances. Resilience, or the ability to bounce back, is crucial.

• The possibility of failure and unseen obstacles must be accepted and, to a certain extent, embraced as part of any strategic plan. This is the resilience imperative. If the existence of negative developments is ignored, fighting and surviving those negative developments is impossible. Resilience is learned from those who have both succeeded and failed.

• As a rule, the people, places, and things that constitute life are robust, yet fragile. Even the most stable of situations can be turned upside-down in a heartbeat. Whether it is an individual, a company, or a country, understanding the dynamic and often unpredictable nature of life can create strength. The weak become stronger by learning and knowing.

• Examples of resilience are manifest in positive outcomes, such as successful companies, a united nation that triumphs over tyranny, or a person who overcomes grief. Resilience is also found in negative forms, such as terrorist networks or diseases. Such entities thrive by sensing when to strike, scaling up their forces, and swarming the target. The sense, scale, and swarm model is an effective form of resilience.

• There is strength in numbers. Clustering, or banding together to respond to a challenge or disaster, is an effective resilience strategy. The way in which groups set aside personal allegiances and unite can determine successful resilience.

• Everyone possesses the seeds of a resilient mind that can create change in the face of desperation. In times of trouble, this resilient mind can design answers or formulate solutions.

• The ultimate success of resilience is often dictated by switching roles or changing sides. In some cases, enemies must become allies for the greater good. While it is human nature to turn inward during times of trouble, taking a more cooperative approach is often a better plan of action.

• It is accepted that all individuals have an innate tolerance to the concept of risk. In fact, it is part of the human condition to desire some level of risk at all times. Even subconsciously, risk is not an entirely unattractive prospect. Cognitive diversity-using different opinions and strengths to solve problems and limit risk-can mitigate and manage risk as well as foster resilience.

• Communities of people have the power to unite to help others bounce back. Relationships and social structures are key to resilience.

• There are unique qualities that exist in resilient people and communities. Translational leaders cross over all ethnic and economic barriers with their ability to unite diverse groups, foster relationships, and create harmony despite social, political, or financial differences.

• It is important that leaders find balance. Strategies for coping should be solid, but also fluid and loose so as to be adaptable to unexpected change.

For more information and to get free samples of Business Book Summaries, please visit

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment