Resilience Training for Staff


Organisations are changing. Staff have much to adapt to – new technology, team structures & reporting, leaders wanting ‘more with less’, colleagues under pressure, and clients who are wanting services ‘faster, better & cheaper’ (and complaining when they don’t get it).
Staff members need support and strategies to cope with the pressures and demands. This workshop will give techniques and practical tips for coping with difficult situations and stress.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand what resilience is
  • Understand how resilience links to individual wellbeing
  • Identify practical steps to build and maintain resilience


Session 1: What is Resilience?

Group work to explore what it is – interactive exercises for examples of resilience in participants’ lives and characteristics they have noticed in others. Photos of high profile examples of resilience from the media for discussion.

  • Adapting well in the face of change, adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress (it is our default mode – refer to the durability bias)
  • Bounce back
  • Capacity to cope by managing self
  • How it can be learnt
  • Importance of strong social networks
  • Relationships that create love and trust, provide role models, and offer encouragement and assurance help to bolster a persons resilience
  • Individuals who are able to engage and impact the environment around them are often judged the most resilient (ie take control)
  • Self awareness and acceptance
Session 2: Physiology of Stress and Resilience
  • Introduction to the body’s threat response and the short and longer term physical and psychological implications of being in heightened arousal (stress and burn out).
  • Questionnaire to assess personal stress levels
  • Introduction to the negativity bias (Dr Rick Hanson) and the positivity ratio (Barbara Frederickson)
  • Discussion on findings in neuroscience of the social needs of humans that once a perceived threat is registered – can create a vicious cycle (Dr David Rock – Neuroleadership)
  • Discussion on the individual mindset and personality styles that can create and exacerbate the stress response
  • Understanding the human ‘iceberg’
  • Introduction to research and tools on self compassion and helpful internal dialogue
Session 3: Introduction to Resilience Traits
  • Insight – being curious; having empathy of self and others
  • Independence- taking control over one’s life and goal setting.
  • Relationship- mutually gratifying personal ties that are characterized by a balance of give and take
  • Initiative – Being pro-active taking charge of problems / resolving conflict
  • Creativity – using imagination / art and comedy to give form to innermost feelings and create own future
  • Humour – seeing the funny or absurd side of things
  • Morality – acting on the basis of an informed conscience. – a sense of obligation to contribute to the well-being of others – noting your values.
  • Use of individual worksheets to map where participants can apply these principles
Session 4: Managing Emotions and Impulse Control
  • Relate emotions and physiology to the threat responses discussed earlier
  • How to notice and manage emotions in the moment as they arise(use of mindfulness)
  • Stress management techniques in the moment
  • Noticing unhelpful self talk – reframing (ABCD model)
  • Mindfulness techniques / mindfulness exercise
Session 5: Drawing it all Together – Personal Planning
  • Developing an understanding of self as an individual and your personal triggers (use personal triggers exercise)
  • Mapping your ‘wheel of life’ to ensure that you have a balanced life (wheel of life handout) – exercise, community, financial, spiritual, exercise, sleep etc
  • Taking stock of relationships that are important to you and setting goals to ensure that the relationships are maintained
  • Noting resources; people and services that can provide support
  • Taking stock of long term goals and sense of purpose
  • Setting a resilience action plan including any areas for development such as assertiveness; stress management; communication skills etc.

Target Audience

Frontline staff or teams undergoing rapid change, particularly those who feel they are not coping well.


Half Day

Maximum Participants

16 – 20 participants.
Individuals are invited to enquire about our one-on-one coaching service.


Posted on

February 22, 2016