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Making layoffs? Resilience is the key to minimizing lost productivity

building resilience in teams min

If you’re considering making layoffs, you’re not alone. Recent news has been peppered with stories of huge brands downsizing due to changing markets and global conditions. 

For business leaders and HR teams, managing redundancies is one of the toughest things you’ll face in your career. Not only is there the emotional burden of letting people go, there’s also anxiety around the long-term impact of reducing headcount. 

Providing support to exiting team members helps ease the burden. But how can you ensure you’re doing enough to protect your remaining teams? In this blog we’ll help you understand why building resilience in your teams is key to ongoing business success, and how to develop those all important skills.

The emotional toll of layoffs

Surviving a round of layoffs can be bittersweet. Staying employed in an uncertain economy is clearly a positive, but not only does it raise concerns around the company’s future, many remaining employees feel guilty about their recently departed friends and colleagues. 

Known as survivor’s guilt, this emotional response manifests in a number of ways that can be detrimental to business. From low morale impacting productivity, to anxiety causing employees to consider careers elsewhere, and a heightened risk of burnout, your ‘survivors’ need the right support to drive success in the wake of layoffs. 

The risk to productivity

Remaining teams experience a 20% decline in productivity – at a time when you really need people to be performing. This is largely due to uncertainty around their ongoing job security, and the ripple effect of shifting reporting lines and team dynamics. 

Innovation also takes a huge hit. Reducing headcount means losing creativity and diversity of thought; firms that cut their staff by 15% see a 24% decline in the number of new inventions.

The power of resilience

Resilience is not a lack of emotional response. It is actually the ability to withstand or recover quickly from challenges. 

While there’s no getting away from the emotional toll of layoffs, resilient employees are more equipped to process their emotions, and remain dedicated to their work, even in the face of setbacks. 

Resilience has a positive impact on engagement and overall wellbeing. Nurturing resilience in your employees helps you create an environment less impacted by change; remaining employees are more productive and engaged, ultimately protecting your bottom line.

How can you boost resilience in your employees?

Working one on one with a coach gives employees the space to understand how to process their emotions and overcome roadblocks: they’ll develop essential skills needed to thrive during adversity. 

The best coaches empower employees to self-discover pre-existing skills, work on new ones, and develop self-awareness – enabling clarity of thought and constructive responses to challenges.

Change is inevitable. Whether or not you’re reducing headcount, investing in your team’s resilience future-proofs your success. Building resilient teams who know how to recover from setbacks and take adversity in their stride is good for business. 

Find out more about ways to support your whole business through layoffs with out guide: The hidden costs of layoffs.