Cultivating Resilience - Leadership Program - Mentora Institute

Cultivating Resilience

Cultivate a set of behaviors and mindsets that can allow you not simply to survive but thrive in conditions in which you face uncertainty, change, setbacks, and low odds of success.

The Case for Resilience at the Workplace

Studies have shown that resilient employees:

  • Manage stress effectively
  • Build strong relationships and trust with others
  • Avoid burnout
  • View their work as meaningful
  • Behave in ways that are true to their values and beliefs

Further research shows that resilience leads to greater zest, optimism, energy, and openness to new experiences at the workplace.

Sources: “Resilience in the Workplace,” Positive Psychology (2021)

42 percent of employees globally have experienced burnout and other mental health issues since the start of the pandemic.

70 percent of C-suite executives do not feel confident about their organization’s ability to pivot/adapt to disruptive events.

56 percent of employees do not believe that they can always “bounce back” from hardship.

7 in 10 people worldwide report that they are struggling or suffering in their lives.

Sources: McKinsey, Deloitte’s 2021 Global Resilience Report, Gallup

Behaviors Learned

  • An eye vector icon. Anticipate risks and prepare to avoid or mitigate them
  • open book vector icon. Learn and grow from every setback
  • An arrow-up vector icon in a circle frame. Know when to push, when to pull, when to pause, and when to pivot
  • A key vector icon Open yourself up to challenges that help you expand your comfort zone and have greater impact
  • A bullseye with a missing part vector icon. Practice tenacity by staying inspired in tough times
  • A sun vector icon. Discover new pathways to success when your current approach fails

Core Ideas

Resilient teams unleash their full creative problem-solving potential to navigate adverse conditions. Resilience is much more than simply rebounding from setbacks.

Mentora’s Cultivating Resilience program is grounded in six principles:

Use adversity

Setbacks and failures should make you better, not bitter. They are key opportunities for teams to reflect, learn, and become wiser and stronger for the future.

Anticipate and avert (or mitigate)

Some adversities can be anticipated, and then, with advance planning, can be mitigated or averted. This then allows you to operate with more success in stormy conditions.

Know when to fight

If the conditions warrant it, you should not accept the adversity, but fight through it to the end, tenaciously.

Know when to move on

In some situations, it is self-destructive to keep the fight going. Instead of fighting because of ego, emotion, or attachment to an outcome, pull back, accept the situation, and move on.

Learn and turn

When a certain direction isn’t working, you can still learn from the experience, reframe your goal, and change your path midstream to arrive at a new destination.

Reframe adversity

Some challenges may be good for you to engage with. They are opportunities to help expand your comfort zone, and with the right preparation, you may reap significant benefits by engaging with these situations.

Case Study

Resilience – The Secret to Success in a Fast-Changing World


At a time of heightened global uncertainty, emotional turbulence, and workforce restructuring, Xylem was looking for a way to help their managers stay inspired and work toward the organization’s mission, while ensuring their teams are engaged and purpose-driven. Xylem recognized that the only way for them to sustain personal and organizational success at this time was to cultivate Resilient Leadership.


Xylem approached Mentora to help their People Managers and Project Team Leaders learn how to adapt, rebound, learn, and navigate setbacks and challenges, so that they thrive — and not simply survive — in a fast-changing world.

Mentora designed a four-week blended learning program to help Xylem’s managers and team leaders cultivate resilience individually, as well as in their teams. Our program focused on how resilient leadership is not simply about learning how to rebound from setbacks — but is instead a much broader platform for enhancing one’s capacity to learn, grow, innovate, adapt, influence, manage conflict, and inspire change.

Program Delivery

Mentora delivered this program using a blended approach:

  • A kick-off webinar to ground the group in the Six Principles of Resilience
  • A self-paced digital learning program with role-play-based practice
  • Opportunities to apply their learnings to real-life contexts
  • Virtually delivered live workshops to help them strengthen their ability to navigate setbacks and challenges
  • An Action-Learning Lab to help each participant practice the techniques they learned with others in their cohort


87 percent of participants found the program to be valuable to them.
Our program also resulted in significant shifts in participants’ likelihood and ability to practice certain behaviors critical to resilience:

Behavior % likely to practice this
before the program
% likely to practice this
after the program
Stop and consider whether I should push, pull, pause, or pivot. 38 100
Take myself and others on a hero’s journey 38 75
Make a conscious shift from a self-defeating mindset to one that can maximize impact. 38 88
Shift awareness from outer behavior, thoughts, and feelings to the stillness and well-being at the inner core. 25 75
Engage in fast cycles of feedback, reflection, learning, and adjustment. 25 50
Take failures, setbacks, and other forms of adversities as learning opportunities. 38 63
Reconnect with purpose/values and re-express them in new conditions as needed. 25 50
Identify and eliminate distortions in thoughts. 25 50
Participant Voices

This program has made me a better leader with increased self-awareness. I am now better equipped to deal with adversity and drive change. Hopefully I can use this to better manage and coach my staff to motivate them to be better and grow.

Executive | Xylem

Participant Voices

I have been struggling with a project, and by shifting my mindset, I am trying different avenues to lead the team and communicate with a difficult customer. So far, I think I have been able to communicate better with difficult personalities because the mindset shift allows me to be more empathic and understanding.

Executive | Xylem