RESILIENCE THROUGH THE INTEGRAL LENS - A CASE STUDY
Maureen Metcalf and Belinda Gore
This article takes a look at resilience through an integral lens. We will explore how we define it, how we applied it to a client project, our findings, and our analysis.
Our objective in writing this article is to contribute to the literature of applied integral theory about leadership development through sharing our learnings. These theories, and our application of them, are a work in process. We (Maureen Metcalf and Belinda Gore) have been teaching resilience using an evolving approach for several years. The initial work was developed and delivered by Belinda and used at MeadWestvaco, a global packaging company, which was moving the operations of a plant from Ohio to Mexico. We have continually refined the initial materials and they have become an important building block for our resilience training and coaching, as well as an important part of how we talk about leadership and the skills we help our leadership clients develop. We hope that others can learn from our experience as we continue to gain knowledge ourselves through this process.
As leaders we must remain flexible in the face of change and the unknown. In the process we evolve to better fit our shifting economic and technological environment while maintaining our focus on vision and long term goals. We believe healthy leadership development means that leaders, in the midst of continual change, actually change" themselves" as well as their organizations.
Several studies, including a book written by Daniel Todd Gilbert entitled "STUMBLING ON HAPPINESS", support the idea that, after a period of adjustment, we return to our prior level of happiness no matter what happens to us. In order for this to happen, it is helpful to take a broad perspective and remember that what we are going through is part of larger cycles, and that whatever we are feeling (good or bad) will pass.
In engineering terms, resilience is measured as how much disturbance a system can absorb before it breaks down. In leadership terms, we define it as the ability to adapt in the face of multiple changes while continuing to persevere toward strategic goals. In our very dynamic work environments we, as leaders, must build resilience in ourselves as well as in our employees.
Leader resilience focuses on the leader as a person. It is a subtle distinction, but the underlying thought is this: as a leader, I need to be personally healthy and strong to do a good job in my leadership role. If I am unhealthy as a person, I am unable to lead effectively.
CASE STUDY COMPANY PROFILE
MeadWestvaco, a global packaging company operating in 30 countries, is known for its brands in healthcare, personal and beauty care, food, beverage, media and entertainment, and home and garden industries. The company employs 22,000 people worldwide and serves customers in 100 nations. In 2009, an effort to strategically reduce costs and overhead included plans to close its MWV Calmar facility, a pump and dispensing manufacturing and distribution operation located in Washington Court House, Ohio.
The company consolidated production and equipment with San Luis Potosi and moved from Washington Court House to Monterey, Mexico. As an outside contractor Potosi offered more seamless scalability and featured more advanced production equipment and processes.Go read the whole article.
Tags: Maureen Metcalf, Belinda Gore, Resilience Through The Integral Lens, Case Study, MeadWestvaco, Daniel Todd Gilbert, Stumbling on Happiness, Integral leadership Review, applied integral theory, leadership development, Integral, leadership, coaching, resiliency
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