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Developing Resilience for Success with Executive Coaching

Throughout our lives, we all face tough, challenging, and sometimes seemingly impossible situations. Whether at work or home, these moments test us. But they also help us develop resilience and the ability to ‘bounce back’. 


At The Leadership Coaches, we speak with leaders who struggle with change and challenges. Many of them feel drained and knocked down by situations at work and want to develop a 'thicker skin' so they can handle the impact better. 


For these leaders, we recommend executive coaching. But how exactly can coaching help you build resilience? 


In this blog, we'll share five ways executive coaching can support you in developing resilience, featuring expert insights from our Director of Coaching and Learning Ian White. 

  

What Is Resilience? 

“Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient.” ― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free 

Resilience is all about our ability to get through challenging times and come out the other side stronger. It’s our ability to bounce back and thrive when faced with stress and adversity.  


At work, resilience helps us keep a positive outlook, manage our emotions well, and support us in turning setbacks into opportunities for growth. It's a mix of mental, emotional, and behavioural flexibility that helps you navigate life's ups and downs while maintaining your well-being and performance. 


Resilience is also defined as: 


  • “Perseverance in the face of adversity.” 

  • “Being able to recover and adapt well from stressful situations.” 

 

Why Is It Important to Develop Resilience as a Leader? 

“When we learn how to become resilient, we learn how to embrace the beautifully broad spectrum of the human experience.” ― Jaeda Dewalt 

Developing resilience as a leader is important because it helps you handle the inevitable challenges and uncertainties of the workplace with confidence and composure. 

But that’s not all. Resilience helps us manage stress better, stay positive, and inspire our teams, even during tough times. 


When we build our resilience, we make better decisions under pressure and create supportive, motivated work environments. By showing resilience, we also set a strong example, encouraging our teams to adapt to changes and stay committed to their goals. 


Let’s look at an example. 

Female leaders at work

Sarah is a leader in the financial industry, managing a crucial project with a tight deadline. Midway through the project, unexpected challenges arise: a key team member resigns, and a major vendor fails to deliver on time. 


Instead of panicking or placing blame, Sarah stays calm and focused. She quickly reassesses the situation, reallocates resources, and adjusts the project timeline to accommodate the setbacks. She also communicates openly with her team and stakeholders, keeping everyone informed and motivated. 


Despite the obstacles, Sarah's resilient approach helps the team stay on track and ultimately deliver the project successfully. 


As a result of Sarah’s resilient leadership, the team starts to mirror her attitude. They become more optimistic, motivated, and willing to try new approaches. Their morale improves, and they begin to see progress. Sarah’s resilience not only helps the team navigate tough times but also fosters a culture of perseverance and innovation. 

As we can see from Sarah's example, developing resilience as a leader is important because it directly influences the team’s ability to overcome challenges and succeed together. It also shows how resilience helps us achieve our goals despite obstacles. 

 

5 Ways That Executive Coaching Can Support You in Developing Resilience 

Now we’ve touched on what resilience is and why it’s important to develop resilience as a leader, let’s look at 5 ways that executive coaching can support you and your people in developing resilience. 


1. Executive coaching provides a psychologically safe space 

One of the most important ways to build resilience is to talk about what is happening in a safe space; a space where you can say anything without fear of being judged or having to face that person later in a meeting.

Executive coaching in the workplace

When you work with an executive coach, you’ll find that you have just that. An executive coach will offer you a space where you can talk openly. They’ll build rapport and trust, bringing about transformational change.   

 

At The Leadership Coaches, we know just how important it is that you’re partnered with a coach you can trust and speak freely with. For this reason, we always offer two coaching chemistry sessions with our coaches to ensure that you’re able to test the waters and see whether you have a connection with the coach before coaching begins.   

  

2. Coaching enables you to take a step back and reflect 

Leadership is like a non-stop rollercoaster ride – it's exhilarating, but it can also be incredibly demanding. Amidst the chaos of meetings, deadlines, and constant decision-making, finding a moment to pause and reflect can feel like a luxury. That's where an executive coach steps in. 


Working with an executive coach isn't just about ticking off another item on your to-do list – it's an investment in yourself, both personally and professionally. It's carving out that sacred space where you can hit the pause button, take a deep breath, and really dive into some introspection. 


By talking, thinking, processing, and being fully heard, working with an executive coach can help you explore the bigger picture and focus on having a clear perspective, which is key to building resilience.  

  

3. Executive coaching can challenge you to take control and act 

When it comes to building resilience, tackling challenges can feel like trying to scale a mountain. But when you work with an executive coach, you’ll find that high levels of challenge come hand-in-hand with high levels of support, which allows you to increase your self-awareness and take control.  

Colleagues at work

We know that in situations that require resilience, it’s possible to feel hopeless and helpless. To overcome these situations, acting and taking control of what you can control is the best way forward. After all, that’s the essence of resilience – owning your narrative and taking control of what you can rather than focusing on what you can’t control.  

 

This is where executive coaching comes in. Coaches aren’t just there to tell you that everything will be okay. Instead, they're there to challenge you, to push you outside your comfort zone, and to help you see the bigger picture, all of which will help you develop your resilience. 

  

4. Coaching supports you in returning to your values and finding ways to live them 

In harder times when we need to bounce back, we can often find that our values are compromised. Living our values enables us to be more resilient, but when we work against our values, we lose energy, and our mental health can be negatively affected.   

 

Working with an executive coach to clearly define our values and envision how they look when we are living them well improves our resilience as we can use our values to anchor ourselves in turbulent times. 

  

5. Coaching helps you develop your confidence 

In the fast-paced world of business, confidence is key. Coaching helps you build that confidence, which in turn makes you more resilient. When you believe in yourself and your abilities, setbacks don’t seem so daunting—they’re just opportunities to grow.

 

But confidence isn’t built by sitting still. It comes from taking risks and stepping out of your comfort zone. That’s where coaching comes in. It gives you a safe space to reflect, get support, and face challenges head-on. 


In coaching, you’re supported by a coach who believes in you and wants to see you succeed. Together, you explore your strengths, tackle obstacles, and come out stronger on the other side. 


Overcoming Leadership Challenges – Case Study 

In today’s dynamic business landscape, leaders frequently encounter challenges that can test their ability to juggle competing priorities. Meetings, the need for collaboration, and the volume of work can leave even the most experienced of leaders feeling overwhelmed.  

Man overwhelmed at work

This was true for Nick*, who was recognised as a high-potential leader. Both the company and Nick chose to fast-track his development through one-to-one executive coaching.   

  

If, like Nick, you often find yourself feeling overwhelmed and want to learn more about how coaching can support you in feeling less overwhelmed, learn more about Nick’s journey and experience with executive coaching here

 

Contact The Leadership Coaches Today 

At The Leadership Coaches, our team of coaches are on hand to support you and your people. From developing resilience to increasing confidence and overcoming leadership challenges, they all have first-hand experience in the modern workplace.  


Whether you’re in search of executive coaching for yourself, members of your team, or your organisation, we’ve got you covered with our services, including coaching with a sponsor, coaching with stakeholder feedback, and coaching for future leaders.  


To find out more about developing resilience with coaching, call us on 03450 950 480.  

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