Overcoming Adversity in the Workplace

As a business owner, facing challenges comes with the territory. Whether it be financial struggles, staffing issues, lack of resources or even being too busy, facing adversity is nothing new to you.

During difficult times you may feel helpless and overwhelmed, making it hard to maintain a positive attitude and overcome. Here are some tips to help you rise above the hardships and flourish in the process.

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Is it a Mountain or a Mole Hill?

Most successful businesses have internal and external resources that keep their business afloat. It may seem that if one thing goes wrong, everything goes wrong. This is where your leadership skills come to light.

First, identify the problem, is it something you can fix? Is it a technology or human error? Who can you ask for help if you're unsure how to resolve it? Ask yourself these questions before panicking. Be solution driven so you can focus on the work getting completed, and not letting the problem ruin your day. Feeling sorry for yourself won't make progress, but it could impact the way employees, strategic partners and clients see you. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it is important that you take a moment to assess the issue at hand, find calm, and determine how to get closer to a solution. It is up to you to rise to the challenge, show that you have the ability to adapt to change and maintain control.

Be prepared for ANYTHING!

When taking on significant tasks at work, it’s crucial to have a backup plan should something go wrong. As a business owner, you must work with your team to prepare for the difficulties before it happens; not after. When discussing new projects and goals, create a plan with your team. Ask yourself and your team where they see pitfalls and obstacles. Find alternative paths to success by working through problems and devising solutions. Pose the following questions to yourself and your team; What result do we wish to achieve? How can we work around that obstacle? Do we have the right tools to overcome that challenge?

Taking the time to “battle test” your own process will answer many of these questions, allowing you and your team to be better prepared and have an action plan for any scenario, good and bad. When tough times come, being prepared will help everyone stays calm, collected, and can remain productive.

Remember, A-B-C…

To help you overcome obstacles at work, consider creating workflows with your team using past challenges as a guide. Remember what obstacles came your way, the steps you took to overcome them, and what outcome came from it. By planning things out in advance, you and your team will be more confident when challenges arise and familiar with changes, they need to take to correct course. Creating your workflow doesn't necessarily mean

that you will have the answer to every problem, but it allows you to consistently reference a playbook when conditions are changing. Create the workflow, familiarize yourself with the workflow, implement the workflow, and make changes in processes where needed. It won’t always stay the same because not every challenge has the same solution, but it will create a culture where problems have solutions, and those solutions create change for the better.

Two heads are better than one

We all know the saying, "There's no I in Team". As a business owner it is up to you to foster healthy communication as part of your work culture. Being a coach to your team members means motivating them to help overcome the challenges they are facing, and most importantly, collaborate.

Create a support system for when problems pop up so that everyone on the team is comfortable and can speak their ideas openly. Thinking critically as a team is more likely to yield better results than one single person beating themselves up trying to create a solution with no help. Turn negative situations into positive outcomes. If there's a problem, brainstorm with your team on different courses of action. It's not guaranteed that the proper solution will come to mind but providing support to your team members ensures that everyone is in this together. One person's successes means the business succeeds.