The Key to Organizational Resilience? Your Workforce.

Learn how to cultivate a culture of organizational resilience with investments in data literacy, upskilling, and more. 

It’s no secret that the past several years have been challenging for businesses across the country and around the world. First, the Covid-19 pandemic forced many companies to downsize or close altogether as lockdowns and social distancing began to undermine traditional consumer habits. At the same time, companies faced supply chain disruptions, fuel shortages, and inflation that continue to send shockwaves throughout global markets. 

Companies seeking to remain competitive in today’s unpredictable environment will need to explore measures to confront these obstacles head-on. For business leaders, this means investing heavily in the workforce training and resources that employees need to navigate a rapidly changing world. Read on to learn more about how to foster greater organizational resilience through workforce development and why it’s so essential.

What Does Organizational Resilience Mean and Why Does It Matter?

In short, organizational resilience refers to how a company prepares and adapts to various changes or difficult situations. Sometimes these changes come on gradually, such as increased reliance on automation, but other changes can be quite sudden, like a war, natural disaster, pandemic, or emergency in the workplace. A business with excellent organizational resilience often sees a crisis or complication as an opportunity to adapt and evolve, making it far more likely to thrive during uncertain times. Developing better organizational resilience is critical for companies that want to gain an edge over competitors or simply mitigate risks that can put operations in jeopardy.

Why Now’s the Perfect Time to Focus on Workforce Development

The single best way for a business to become more resilient is to directly invest in its employees. After all, an organization’s adaptability and long-term success rely entirely on having access to a dedicated, capable workforce that can rise to the occasion when things move in a new direction. Here are a few of the reasons why companies should be focusing on empowering their workers right now.

Emerging Technologies Are Changing the Business Landscape

Virtually every aspect of modern life is currently experiencing a technological transformation. Dubbed the fourth industrial revolution, this new era promises a future of endless opportunities for companies that know how to leverage breakthroughs like cloud computing, biometrics, machine learning, and AI-powered automation. However, utilizing rapidly evolving technologies depends upon a skilled workforce with the knowledge, training, and direct experience needed to maintain or even enhance these complex systems. Businesses that fail to rise to the occasion by reskilling or retraining their workers may find themselves left behind as the rate of technological development only continues to accelerate.  

Uncertain Economic Times Call for Adaptability

As the economic environment changes, organizations need to evolve and adapt in response. By giving workers access to improved educational resources and better digital tools, it’s much easier to foster an environment where team members can overcome obstacles with confidence. Businesses today must be prepared for every contingency, and this starts with developing a flexible workforce that can migrate into different roles as needed or quickly acquire new skills when difficulties arise. 

For example, rising fuel costs or sudden price increases from a supplier may put some organizations in hot water, forcing layoffs or other approaches to reducing overhead. Meanwhile, a business that employs a well-rounded, adaptable workforce may see this as an opportunity to explore streamlining existing processes by augmenting human workflows with AI solutions that can help to minimize operating costs.

Skilled Workers Develop More Creative Solutions to Complex Problems

Organizations that invest in their workers today are more prepared to take on the challenges of tomorrow. To encourage innovation in the face of adversity, employees need not only the freedom to explore new ideas but also the knowledge of how to navigate emerging tools and software platforms that can make their creative solutions a reality. To accomplish this task, business leaders and stakeholders must cultivate an environment that puts a premium on the continuous learning of workers. Aside from providing training in essential areas like coding and information technology fundamentals, employers should also consider improving the soft skills of employees, including communication, time management, and interdepartmental collaboration.

Tips for Cultivating Greater Organizational Resilience

Building a business that can weather an increasingly unpredictable future doesn’t need to be expensive, time-consuming, or overly complicated. By following just a few of these tips, it’s relatively easy to build a more robust and adaptable organization that can sustainably thrive despite the circumstances. Here are some of the most effective approaches for developing greater organizational resilience.

Create a Culture That Values Overcoming Challenges

A company’s organizational culture can have a dramatic impact on how employees feel about their work and the way they resolve difficult problems. Look for ways to encourage innovation and creative solutions by developing a culture that rewards critical thinking or new ideas. Whenever breakthroughs are discovered, take the time to recognize the teams or individual employees involved while simultaneously incentivizing others to follow suit. As an organization’s culture and values begin to reshape the way workers confront challenges, word of mouth will spread, helping to attract new talent to the company that is eager to explore exciting and inventive concepts.

Prepare for Tomorrow’s Surprises

The celebrated American basketball coach John Wooden once said, “Confidence comes from being prepared,” and in today’s unpredictable business climate, this quote is especially relevant. The most successful businesses today know how to recognize potential concerns far in advance and plan for them accordingly. Organizations should start by creating emergency preparedness protocols for events like natural disasters, fires, or power outages that can cause immediate interruptions to operations. However, it’s also important to prepare for possible future events that can cause long-term complications, such as another pandemic or a prolonged supply chain disruption brought on by escalating global conflicts.

Invest in Data Literacy Development

With developments in cloud computing and powerful AI-powered algorithms, it’s now possible to quantify huge amounts of data in a fraction of the time, giving organizations access to endless streams of insightful information on customer behaviors and industry trends. Unfortunately, the ongoing data literacy skills gap makes it difficult for nontechnical employees to properly correlate and interpret this information in an actionable way. To resolve this problem, companies need to invest in seminars, workshops, and continuous learning training programs to expand the skill sets of existing employees. Providing these resources to workers will not only give them the ability to navigate today’s emerging data-driven tools but also prepare them for the future applications of these technologies.

Encourage Flexibility by Cross-Training Employees

Workers who already have a working knowledge of complex technology can also bring other employees up to speed on key areas like software programming, machine learning, and AI-powered applications. As an organization’s workforce becomes more attuned to these developments, they will begin to acquire the skills needed to take on greater responsibilities, empowering them to more effectively respond when various changes impact the company. Given time, vastly different departments from HR to sales can learn to use tools like chatbots or workflow automation platforms to create more efficient and resilient operational frameworks.

How Correlation One Can Help

At Correlation One, we help organizations become more resilient by ensuring employees have the knowledge and training they need to operate at a higher level amid today’s ever-changing technological environment. While our customized employee training programs empower workers to acquire the skills of tomorrow, our data literacy assessment platform helps to rapidly screen new-hire candidates who can occupy vital roles in data science and analytics. To learn more, contact us to get started.