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Emotional Resilience in Business

By Katie Black

Life teaches us many truths. They range from "in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes" to "you don't know the character of a person until you split an inheritance with them" to "cherish your loved ones because you never know when you will see them next". COVID-19 has revealed yet another truth: "you don't know the efficacy of a leader until you have survived the plague together".

As a corporate commercial litigator, I have the benefit of watching C-Level Executives navigate their businesses through challenge. I get to see what works and what does not. Good leaders ensure clarity of vision and a unified sense of purpose. They give their team the resources and authority that they require to get the job done. Lastly, they hold people to account. In addition to the above, the great leaders do something extra: they check in with each team member throughout the planning and execution processes. Like the Doctor in this Banksy mural, they take the time to see how everyone is doing, from the cleaning staff to their VPs. They listen.

This process of checking in with people is more important than ever. The social isolation caused directly and indirectly by COVID-19 is causing people to suffer. As a lawyer, I see the impact that this stress has on personal interactions in the workplace and in business decision making generally. It is not good. So what can you and/or your employer do in addition engaging your Employee Assistance Program? Here are some resources that you may find helpful for yourself and your team:

  1. Emotional Resilience

3. Preventing Burnout - An excellent podcast

4. EAP / Counselling - Ensuring that people have access to EAP and affordable counselling

As we come up on the one year anniversary of this new "normal", it is imperative that we demonstrate good leadership. By this I mean that it is more important that ever that we make ourselves available to our family, team members and community at large; that we check in.

While I have seen the worst in people (e.g. the storming of Capital Hill), I have also seen the best that humanity has to offer. I have seen families, businesses and communities come together in an unprecedented fashion. We are pulling through this by supporting one another. Please accept my support.

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