An Introduction to Resilience from Jenny Campbell, Director lifetimeswork


Resilience is a long standing interest of mine. During my corporate career, I found the varying pressures took their toll, particularly my energy. I worked on how to organise the use of my own capacity to be  more in line with my daily working rhthym, and using the concept of 'putting something into the tank' rather than getting more and more efficient at organising the outputs from the tank. Consequently, I found myself managing to ensure I had excess energy, and that in turn helped me be more creative.


My research work on resilience stems from this time.  


Resilience video

Jenny Campbell, director of lifetimeswork, explains the background and results of her 2009 publication into Personal Resilience and its links to Organisational Resilience.


The Findings on Personal Resilience

In 2007 I set out to investigate further what resilience is for leaders. I interviewed 25 leaders across the corporate, public and entrepreneurial sectors, and had support from 2 pyschologists. Further I did a lot of desk research. The results culminated in the publication of the article 'Personal Resilience and its links to Organisational Resilience', in 2009. The main findings of this research are surprising. Personal Resilience


  • Can be learnt
  • Is not confidence
  • Is about both being able to control and letting go of the need to control
  • Includes speed of bounce back
  • Includes a full recovery of energy
  • Includes pacing so that around a third of an individual’s energy is used for sensing, prioritising and refreshing.


For a summary of this article, please see under the Resilience Resources section or click here.


 Since 2009, my work on resilience has taken me far and wide. I work with leaders and leadership teams who are undertaking transformation, with those whose resilience has been under test, and those who want to work on their resilience specifically as part of their mastery in leadership. It now enters into my systems coaching work as organisations and indeed partnership systems look at their own resilience. I offer resilience coaching and resilience workshops.


The Findings on Organisational Resilience from 2009 - raising questions and triggering current research

Furthermore, Organisational Resilience is up to 50% dependent on the resilience of the Top Team. This is alongside another six key factors, Strategic and 'Organisational Design' factors. The results on Organisational Resilience were indirect and not substantially evidenced. The ideas raised in 2009 however give rise to several questions:

  • What is organisational resilience and how can you build/sustain it?
  • How is it linked to organisational performance?
  • What is team resilience and how can you build/sustain it?
  • What other factors other than individuals and teams are involved for organisational resilience?



Team Resilience Research, A Collaboration

 Excitingly, I am now leading a collaboration of coaches and consultants who are investigating Team Resilience.


We hold an active enquiry directly with client teams, each working with a full systems team coaching methodology for supporting the team's development in reislience and its consequent impact on their collective performance.


We aim to answer questions such as 'What is Team Resilience and how does it link to Team Performance'.


The research is sponsored by The Academy of Executive Coaching. If you are a senior coach interested in joining, or a client with a team that would like to participate in order to increase your resilience, please see the research invitation or browse the Team Resilience section for more information.