We have shared an image of how to create organizational resiliency. Within that image and explanation of essential measurements are individuals that make up the organization front and center at the core. We discussed how you can’t strengthen an organization without investing in the people who make it up. The foundation of individual and organizational resiliency is improved self-awareness. This awareness is not static but dynamic and able to be impacted with internal motivation. There are two bridges to resiliency after self-awareness: emotional intelligence and self-efficacy. Whereas we have spoken at some length about emotional intelligence, today we will introduce the second bridge – self-efficacy.
Albert Bandura is one of the most respected modern researchers related to self-efficacy. He aptly defines it as an individual’s belief that they can execute behaviors that are needed to achieve a specific goal. He further goes on to say that self-efficacy belief is an indication of the individual’s ability to control or not control their motivation, social environment and behavior. As students and employees set their sights on performance goals, self-efficacy is important. If an individual doesn’t think they can reach a goal then the likelihood they will reach it is significantly diminished. Self-efficacy also determines what goals we attempt to reach, how we attempt to accomplish them and what we think about our performance as we strive to achieve our goals. In essence, we manifest our success through what we think, believe and do. Additionally, Bandura discusses four sources of self-efficacy including mastery experiences, social modeling, social persuasion, and psychological responses.
As an individual’s moods, emotions, perceptions, and overall stress levels impact psychological reactions; institutions and organizations can work to equip students and employees with tools to reduce stress. This can have a positive impact on self-efficacy increasing the likelihood that school and work goals will be reached as individuals are in the right mindset to approach tasks leading to goal achievement. Ajivar provides posimations and mindfulness videos that help students manage stress levels. As organizations invest in teamwork and interpersonal skills, increasing the social responsibility of its workforce in mentoring and encouraging peers, self-efficacy is further enhanced due to the social persuasion factor. It turns out, our peers exceeding and doing well; additionally encouraging us to do the same, increases our capacity to succeed also. Instead of organizations seeing employee and student performance as the personal responsibility of individuals alone to nurture that area, organizations are becoming aware of their ability and interest to impact performance.
The implications to institutions, for example, is as students come into academic settings with their entry GPA’s, based on IQ, these capacities are not seen as static. Instead, research is clearly showing that individuals’ performance is impacted by their belief about their ability to perform in different areas. Simply, if one believes they can or can’t do something, that belief in oneself is the first step towards accomplishing a goal. Motivational writer Norman Vincent Peale has told us for decades that a positive attitude was one of the essential elements of success. This positive attitude or self-efficacy is a critical ingredient in resiliency. This confident viewpoint can vary from class to class as the person’s belief and perceptions about their abilities can be very different based upon what they themselves, their families, peers, or statements have been about their performance in any given area has been up to that point.
Another factor impacting an individual’s ability to believe in their capabilities is how their brain is functioning. Dr. Joe Dispenza’s work around brain functioning centers on how mindfulness practices positively impact brain coherence. Specifically, when the brain becomes more coherent through intentional mindfulness practice, stress is decreased in the body. This, in turn, improves how the mind functions. When the brain is functioning in a coherent manner and stress is reduced, an employee’s capability to accurately interpret and respond to situations within their environment shifts. Their capacity for improving self-efficacy, due to their sheer belief alone, improves performance. Belief in one’s capabilities is a fundamental, often overlooked, yet impactful and tangible goal to aspire for within both academic and organizational settings.
Ajivar provides academic settings as well as organizations’ performance-enhancing tools through meditations, interactions that increase emotional intelligence and opportunities for increased self-awareness which in turn improves social and self-management. As these skills increase, individuals develop self-confidence in their capacity for increased self-efficacy and emotion management. This, in turn, improves the individual’s ability to bring their goals to fruition.
We call it Manifess – Manifest your own Success!