Resilience: The word of the month

AccountingWEB editor John Stokdyk keeps bumping into a new buzz word.

The word of the month for July is “resilience”. It triggered my third-time-lucky trend monitoring system during a conversation with Kath Haines from CABA, the accountant’s charity that now offers courses about it to help new and experienced accountants cope with the profession’s demands and stresses.

Being able to discover your resilient core will help you deal with situations when the going gets tough and to bounce back by learning new ways to face life’s adversities, CABA explains.

For individuals, resilience is essentially a new way of dealing with stress, managing time and maintaining your work/life balance.

But in the corporate world, resilience is the new risk management. As such, it should rightly be very close to accountants’ hearts. PwC even has a consultancy practice devoted to the discipline that has been pumping out a series of risk and resilience guides in recent months. They may resort to management speak such as “integrated reputational dashboards” and “adaptive capacity”, the consultants have a point when they argue that running on empty for too long puts the organisation (and individuals for that matter) at significant risk. And they can draw on plenty of evidence of the catastrophic consequences: “In the boom years where most growth constraints were absent, many balance sheets often became so overleveraged that resilience buffers were completely absent, but the cost was deferred until a subsequent shock destroyed all shareholder value.”

That scenario could apply to anyone snowed under with too much to do, not enough time or resources and looming deadlines. Does that ring any bells with you? Perhaps I should ask again in mid-January.

And more to the point, have you got any resilience strategies you can recommend to help fellow professionals stay strong enough to soldier through their difficulties? A career in counselling or corporate consultancy might just beckon.

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