Building Resilient Managers in Humanitarian Organizations

Building Resilient Managers in Humanitarian Organizations

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During 2010, the massive catastrophes of the Haiti earthquake and Pakistan floods have severely tested the resilience of many humanitarian workers and organizations. Although by no means the only crises organizations responded to, those two disasters in particular have highlighted the importance of qualities such as adaptability, hardiness, and creativity in problem solving, to the humanitarian endeavor, and especially to those working as managers in humanitarian organizations.

Resilience is a fashionable concept to discuss, but it often seems that our understanding of it in relation to humanitarian workers lacks the depth and nuance it deserves, and is increasingly becoming divorced from an organizational context.

People In Aid, through this report, undertakes an initial exploration of the personal skills and strengths, and organizational structures and practices, which can promote resilience in managers working for international humanitarian organizations.

  • Suggests a useful working definition of resilience
  • Identifies key indicators of resilience for managers in humanitarian organizations
  • Identifies key points of influence – organizational structures and practices that can strengthen resilience in managers in humanitarian organisations
  • Offers practical suggestions for ways that humanitarian organizations can help increase the resilience of their middle managers.


Contributor:People In Aid, Lisa McKay


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