Achievement is the fuel for resilience

“The reward of a thing well done is to have done it.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

We all have experienced snowy days on a slope with kids. They get their sleds ready to go down a slippery and unknown track surrounded by trees. Meanwhile, the possibility of hitting a tree or bumping into hidden stones under the snow does not hinder them. Their excitement makes them thrive. The attitude in which children approach these kinds of activities is remarkable. Always ready to take a challenge head-on, they keep adapting to the environment and create the best possible experience. Always attempting new ways to figure out which specific path works best, exhibiting much enthusiasm and being undisturbed by falls. The feeling of achievement shown on their faces is very much alike to resilient leaders creating sustainable organizational structures.

With the achievement scale, we can measure a way of thinking that is highly associated with personal effectiveness. Scores for this style indicate our interest in, as well as our-proficiency at, attaining high-quality results on challenging projects. In many ways, the achievement style characterizes the most constructive approaches to work. Achievers are motivated to succeed by their own values and beliefs. They know they can improve things, and do not hesitate to act on this knowledge. Achievers tend to find their work highly rewarding. They are most interested in getting the job done and in-doing it well. These individuals often pose the skills necessary for effective planning and problem-solving. Their ability to share responsibility to inspire others, and build confidence, makes achievement-oriented people excellent leaders.

What are the values on which this virtue is based?

  • A focus on achieving a standard of excellence.
  • The belief that things have specific and definable causes, a lack of belief in fate, luck or chance.
  • The knowledge that individual effort counts.
  • A commitment to making things better.
  • A belief in the benefits of asking for and giving honest feedback.

Inevitably, this virtue creates unwritten laws such as “Taking on challenging tasks” or “Thinking ahead and planning”.

This type of culture values goal attainment, appropriate risk taking, and rationality in decision-making and task-related activities. Members are expected to set challenging (but realistic) goals, establish plans to reach those goals, and pursue them with confidence and enthusiasm. Members direct their efforts toward clearly specified and meaningful standards for customer service and, in the process, enable the organization to achieve its objectives and goals.

Achievement is the virtue that confronts all the sins that lead to procrastination and make resilience impossible.

Achievement is the best method to fight perfectionist, oppositional, avoidance and conventional. It is as simple and sometimes as difficult as moving forward one step at a time. Some will talk about Lean or continuous improvement, others about management systems or more complex and often Asian names, but it is simply a matter of constantly rolling the wheel of Plan, do, check, act.

How can this virtue be enhanced?

If you do not possess it:

  • Voice your own opinions. Learn to think and act for yourself. Accept the fact that not everything you do will be met with approval.
  • Learn to become more self-directed by setting some personal goals. Start by setting a goal around something simple, work to accomplish it, and congratulate yourself on your achievement.

If you have an organization:

  • Make sure you have a wheel that rolls.
  • Don't sanction mistakes.
  • Manage deadlines and deliverables.

Don't miss our second virtue: Self-actualizing as the foundation of resilience, which we will unfold in our upcoming article. If you want to know more about how to manage change and build resilient organizations, contact us!