In the world of Organizational Resilience, who is our G.O.A.T. (aka Greatest of All Time)? 

  • 06 Mar 2020
  • Daniel

In the ’80s, singer Bonnie Tyler pleaded to us in a raspy singing voice, “I need a hero, I’m holding out for a hero.” If anyone has seen the movie Footloose, you would know this lyric, and the premise of the film, it is about an underdog who takes a stand and makes a big change. What does this have to do with the world of resilience? More on that in a minute.

Have you ever thought about who the biggest influencer in the world of business continuity, disaster recovery, or organizational resilience is in general? I have often pondered this question, and I am trying to understand who in our world and our line of work is the go-to when it comes to ideas, thoughts, best practices, and inspiration. When people want to know more about organizational resilience, do they ask the questions, “who do YOU read” or “where do YOU find inspiration?” I want to understand who are our professions’ Tom Brady, Serena Williams, Taylor Swift or Beyoncé?

Recently, we witnessed the tragic passing of basketball legend Kobe Bryant. Looking at his work on the basketball court, you see a five-time champion—someone who achieved the second-highest single-game scoring record to Wilt Chamberlin. I happened to be listening to the eulogy given by Michael Jordan the other night on my way to the gym.  Michael is a legend of his own, but what he said about Kobe, his “little brother,” as he stated, was that he was a hard worker. He asked a lot of questions, looked for advice, and sought mentorship from Jordan in a lot of aspects of his life. What he did with that advice was to build it into his own legendary status. How do we do that in our profession? Who influences us to do what we do as passionate individuals? My thought is that we must continue to be tenacious and challenge our businesses by using our passion. We must also help each other so that we can continue to grow, inspire, and influence.

Back to Footloose. Ren is the hero of the movie. He is an average person (with some mad gymnastics and dancing skills) who moves to a town with a particular set of strong values. Getting to the root of the issue, we find misplaced values adopted because of a horrific automobile accident that claims the lives of some of the kids on their way back home from a dance. In reaction to the event, the town instilled a policy of no dancing, period. As one who liked to dance, as Ren did, this did not sit well with him. He began to question the institution and was met with a “that’s just the way it is attitude.” However, he persisted, integrating himself with some of the people in town, overcoming ridicule and dissent from some, and developed and delivered a plan (at a town hall meeting) to bring dancing back. Ren eventually became a hero.

We are all heroes in our profession. We create, innovate, and influence wherever we can, and look to overcome obstacles. Taking inspiration from Footloose Ren, we continue to do what we do by planning, inspiring, changing minds, and doing. Like Kobe, we look to our heroes and shape our game around them to become heroes of our own. Who amongst you is the hero in the world of Organizational Resilience? Who will step up and not only help organizations become more resilient, but who will become the equivalent of Steve Jobs in our world? Time to think about how we “cut loose” and find our professions’ G.O.A.T.

About the author

Daniel Olbur

Manager, Crisis Management and Business Continuity

I am a passionate client and community-focused Crisis Management and Business Continuity advocate. Business Continuity has been part of my DNA since 2005. Today, I help to manage an award winning business continuity and crisis management program. My team is involved in round the clock monitoring throughout various parts of the world, focused on pro-actively seeking out where incidents can and will take place. In my spare time, I am a father of three teenagers and married going on 20 years. I love theater, which comes in quite handy when doing exercises, and I am "roadie" for my son's rock and roll cover band, Six On Friday here in Chicagoland.