April 14, 2014 10:00 ET

Link Between Resilience and Career Success to Be Captured in New Study

Research focusses on what makes men and women thrive in the workplace

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - April 14, 2014) - The first major study linking personal resilience, gender and career success will help determine how and why some men and women get to the top.

Much work has been done on the subject of resilience, but there's scant evidence available on whether resilient men and women behave in the same way regarding situations and scenarios, from living and working through a large scale economic crisis to everyday office politics or family issues.

Following interviews with a number of respected business leaders providing insight into the issue, a survey is to be carried out by Sarah Bond of for business sake in partnership with Dr. Gillian Shapiro of Shapiro Consulting. This will seek the views of as many women and men as possible - aiming for at least 1,000 respondents - on the importance of resilience in the workplace.

The poll, sponsored by Nationwide Building Society and Vodafone, will be used to develop insights which will in turn help inform UK employers about how to better enable women and men to reach their full potential.

People are being encouraged to fill out the survey, which closes on Friday, 25th April. It will ask a number of questions, including:

  • How much difference does resilience really make to women's career success?
  • How is career resilience defined for women and men?
  • What helps successful career women and men develop their resilience?
  • How does the resilience of women at the top compare to and differ from that of men?
  • What is the role of the organisation in building women's resilience?

Sarah Bond and Dr. Gillian Shapiro said: "We talk a lot of resilience as a health and well-being issue but little work has been done on the role of resilience in getting to the top of organisations. We simply don't know why, if, or how men and women are different in this respect. Hearing from as many men and women as possible through our survey will make a huge contribution to answering these questions. What we do know, from speaking with business leaders, is that resilience is crucial to success. This research aims to create a greater awareness of the importance of resilience to career success and identify the practical actions women in particular - and the organisations that employ them - can take to build resilience and progress to the top."

Keith Astill, HR Director at Nationwide, said: "It seems certain that those who make it to the top of organisations, and stay there, are extraordinarily resilient and likely share a number of characteristics. As an employer that focuses on developing talent from within, irrespective of background, we are really looking forward to how we can use the research to better understand how to enable women, and men, to reach their full potential."

Sharon Kyle, Group Head of Diversity and Inclusion at Vodafone, said: "Resilience is unarguably a quality that is key to leadership and career success particularly in a business sector where change is fast and constant. However anecdotal evidence within Vodafone suggests the need for resilience is something more overtly cited among our female talent. This research will help us better understand if and why there are gender differences in resilience, and what we can do to ensure both men and women are a successful as they can be in their careers."

The survey can be found here: Twitter users can follow, and mention, the #resilientcareers and #resilientsuccess hashtags.


Nationwide is the world's largest building society as well as the second largest savings provider and a top-three provider of mortgages in the UK. It is also a major provider of current accounts, credit cards, ISAs and personal loans. Nationwide has around 15 million members.

Customers can manage their finances in a branch, on the telephone, internet and post. The Society has around 17,000 employees. Nationwide's head office is in Swindon with administration centres based in Northampton, Bournemouth and Dunfermline. The Society also has a number of call centres across the UK.


Vodafone is one of the world's largest mobile communications companies by revenue with approximately 419 million customers in its controlled and jointly controlled markets as of 31 December 2013. Vodafone has equity interests in telecommunications operations in nearly 30 countries and around 50 partner networks worldwide. For more information, please visit:

for business sake consulting ltd:

for business sake consulting was established in 2012 by Sarah Bond, and provides consulting services on diversity inclusion and organisational change to clients across the sectors.

Shapiro Consulting Limited:

Shapiro Consulting helps organisations improve their performance by building on employee and customer diversity. Established by Dr. Gillian Shapiro in 1998, their consultancy, coaching and research services help clients understand what diversity means to their organisations and derive value from putting inclusion at the heart of everything they do.

Find recent press releases and photos at the Nationwide Media Centre:

Twitter: @NationwidePress


Contact Information