Why Mental Toughness is Crucial in a VUCA World?
Naim Safi, director of Sparc Consulting and mental toughness partner, provides this valuable insight into mental toughness and VUCA
Mental Toughness and VUCA combined provide powerful insights into how individuals and organisations can turn opportunities and threats into successes.
VUCA is another acronym adopted by the occupational world to deal with post globalisation challenges, different environmental contexts and arising financial instability. It all started in the 1990’s to describe Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity in the military space.
From the “fog of war” to its adoption by the occupational world, organisations and individuals are now required to urgently re-calibrate and deploy a different skill-set and approach to maintain their sustainable success in a VUCA world.
The answer lies in developing your Mental Toughness or most commonly known as resilience.
Mental Toughness is a personality trait which determines, in some part, how individuals perform when exposed to stressors, pressure and challenge… irrespective of the prevailing situation. (Clough & Strycharczyk 2011)
Mental Toughness and the 4Cs
Here is how Mental Toughness and its 4 C’s defined as Challenge, Commitment, Control and Confidence are aligned with the 4 VUCA dimensions.
Challenge for Volatility
Change is a constant in our world and the key to success lies in our ability to adapt to challenges to build more agile/resilient workforce and organisations. Challenge is best described as our inner-drive. It describes to what extent you see challenges, change, adversity and variety as opportunities not threats. It helps us nurture a flexible mindset and better manage the fear of the unknown through visualisation, reflection and continuous development.
Commitment for Uncertainty
Operating in high risk-based environments where possible solutions are presented and high levels of uncertainty is pervasive, Commitment is paramount to remain focused by leveraging on available resources to achieve milestones and doing what it takes to reach your final target avoiding stalemate states and idleness.
Control for Complexity
Interdependence and the non-linear interactions within more complex organisations require a degree of Control over our emotions and our ability to still achieve. Increasing self-awareness, learning how to better deal with stressors and the use positive thinking applications will ensure we maintain a balance of peak performance and wellbeing.
Confidence for Ambiguity
Cause and effect analysis no longer prevail as many interpretations appear to be valid in the “unknown of unknowns’ field. Solving this issue requires interpersonal Confidence as many perspectives will be needed to present ideas and act towards a solution. Confidence in your own abilities will also help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and “have a go” to achieve your personal best.
VUCA and MTQ48
Mental Toughness is assessed using the MTQ48 psychometric tool and developed through a series of development and coaching interventions.
Mental Toughness and VUCA together with MTQ48 form a powerful tool for individuals, organisations and coaches to harness and develop control, commitment, challenge and confidence while navigating a VUCA world.
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