Leaders, Start Viewing Setbacks As Opportunities

For some time now, your company has been thriving very well. All of a sudden something stopped working and your productivity was brought to a standstill. When your business suffers a setback, how do you handle it? Everyone responds to setbacks differently. Good leaders are resilient. They bounce back from set-backs.

How can you thrive after a setback takes place in your business? First, don’t panic.

Focus Your Vision.

Focusing where your energy goes determines where the company goes. For example, if you focus on the setback itself and the challenge it brought you, your business will not move forward. On the other hand, if you focus on your vision for where you want to take your business from here, use this transition period wisely.

Looking at ways to strengthen your resilience, you need to first and foremost, stay calm. If you don’t stay calm, you will take reactive actions that can worsen the situation. Otherwise, by staying calm you get to think about what had taken place and take rational steps to work through what the setback situation is on a proactive basis.

A setback is typically an event that hinders your forward progress. This can take the form of employees quitting without notice, losing a large account, or an executive who died suddenly.

Resilience for most people just isn’t there for them. They see a negative situation and wallow in it. For others, you see a negative situation and look for how you can turn it into an advantage. According to Stacey Copas, keynote speaker and facilitator of Resilience for Results, “the key to building resilience is to actively create strategies on how to handle difficult situations – a trait which is absolutely critical for any leader”. A big part of resilience is confidence.

The key ingredients of handling setbacks include the following.

Be Optimistic

Look at your situation as optimistic as possible. Think more along the lines of the “glass-half-full” attitude as you put your focus on spotting opportunities for positive change. By asking thought-provoking questions leading to how this setback can be an opportunity in disguise may be just what your company needs to move forward.

Adopting a Growth Mindset

Being open has you looking at various opportunities for a back-up plan. Seeing a setback in your business can bring you down. By letting the setback get you upset and having you worry about it has you not thinking clearly for the best solution. Instead of going into a downward spiral, turn your energy into asking yourself “How can I add value?”, “How can I contribute to turning things around?” and start to focus on what your next steps need to be, not want the situation is.

Start looking at setbacks as opportunities for new beginnings. Instead of reacting, take a short time to re-think what you have in front of you. Then start to brainstorm what good can actually be the outcome of what you have.

Every day offers you the opportunity to ask yourself, “Will I let this make me better? Or will I allow this to make me bitter?” The choice is ultimately up to you. When in doubt, pause. Don’t let the fight-or-flight stress response take over.

Never Give Up

There’s a great saying that how you do one thing is how you do everything. Setbacks may mean you have to start over on a project, or even that you have to admit defeat on a business idea, but never give up your enthusiasm. When you stay positive and stay in the game, you open yourself up to possibilities. When a setback occurs, immerse yourself in new ideas.

Learn from Setbacks

No matter what the setback, the most important thing you can do is to put things in perspective. It is easier said than done. Look at every failure as an opportunity. Setbacks only slow you down.

Setbacks are merely hurdles standing in your way. They are inevitable and unavoidable at times. As soon as you recognize this, you will begin to navigate through setbacks accordingly. As long as you keep your eyes on the desired outcome, you will get there eventually.

Source by Neal Burgis, Ph.D.

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