Boss Lady

How to apply resilience to your business


Personally, and professionally, in order to thrive, resilience is key. Nothing great happens overnight and there needs to be some form of failure so that weaknesses and points of improvement can be identified, improved and implemented the next time round.

In the business world, resilience is what inspires business growth, it inspires the birth of corporate empires and of remarkable industry change. It is the driver for innovation and development, and it is resilience that builds a business’ unwavering strength amongst competition.

Tips for applying resilience to your business

Did you say NO?

When I think about resilience, I think about having a rather difficult father who, on top of everything else, always said ‘no’. Later in life I realised that he gave me the gift of resilience. To succeed in business, making sales is imperative and if you want your business to grow you cannot take ‘no’ personally.

No usually means one of two things:

  • Not now. I am not ready at this moment but come back to me again. It might take five more attempts before they are ready. It took me 5 years of asking to get our biggest customer. You need to wait for the right time.
  • I don’t have the information to say yes – did you connect your product or service to their business values and goals? Make the link – how will your offering help them? Give them enough information to convince them that what you have to offer is going to help them in some way. Ask them what is stopping them from saying yes – don’t be afraid to ask.

Many women really struggle in this area. It is imperative to not take things personally; business is business and, when you hear ‘no’, all you need to know is that it relates to one of the above two points.

The bumpy road

Life is bumpy – whether it be our personal life, our career or our business life. Accept and embrace the bumps along the way. Business has bumps and the bigger you grow, the bigger the bumps will be. It is good to see these bumps as positive steps towards growth; it is all about perception. What is important is that you need to keep learning and connect with people who are experts in the areas you know nothing about.  Usually the stress dissipates when you become more informed and talk to others.

Something that helped me, and I share, is about paying taxes. Obviously, the bigger you get the more taxes you pay. Rather than complain about the taxes, see it as a sign that you are growing and earning more money, so be grateful that you are paying more taxes. You can say the same about getting lawyers, investing in new systems, and so on. These are all great things that happen on the way to greater success.

Lopsided views

Every situation has an equal amount of positive and negative aspects to it. If you don’t see this, your view becomes lopsided. When something challenging happens, ask yourself what is equally good about this situation. Women tend to get stuck in the emotion. The more you focus on that challenge and the negativity that comes with it, the bigger the challenge will become. I always say that a problem is ‘as big as you make it’ and the more you focus on it, the worse it will become.

We recently had something very challenging happen in our business and my business partner was so stuck in the emotion it kept her awake all night. The next day she stayed up until midnight writing a list of 100 reasons why this issue, that she thought was so negative, was going to be equally positive for our business. The next morning, she rang to say how relieved she felt and that she could now move forward. This is an extraordinary exercise you can do to remove the stress and see your situation with greater clarity.

Meditation helps

There is no question that staying calm and keeping emotions at bay makes business more enjoyable.  There is no such thing as a lack of challenges in a growing business (or even in life). If you are growing as a person or as a business, you will always come up with challenging situations – it is a sign of growth, so embrace it.

Keeping your body, mind and spirit in a healthy state will help you move with all the challenges that come your way. I recommend meditation as its benefits are amazing – it allows you to clear your mind of clutter and permits creative thoughts to come through –  this will help you in every aspect of your business.

Addictions can hold us back

Many of us have addictive tendencies and at times of stress those addictions can really test us. Disciplining the mind is a strengthening exercise that can help overcome addictions and negative thoughts.  The more you exercise discipline, the easier it becomes until one reaches a state of equanimity and clarity of thought. The stressful situation transforms into something relaxing like reading a book, meditating, sleeping or seeing a movie. You will come back to the problem with a different perspective.

Optimistic outlook

As a teenager, my biggest challenge was my addictive personality. At first I thought it was normal. But, as I grew older I became more aware of the negative impact of my addictions and my inability to do anything about them. I tried many things, but nothing seemed to stick. But, I never gave up.

As depressing as things were at times, I knew that I was destined for bigger and better things. I retained that outlook throughout my life. I truly believe that my optimism has led me to where I am right now. It´s imperative that you believe in yourself and that you believe that you have something valuable to offer this world. If you have a positive vision for your future, it will eventuate at some point.

About Tui Cordemans'

Tui Cordemans is the co-founder of Koh Living – a successful $3 million giftware business. Tui created Koh Living along with best friend and business partner Nyree Hibberd to bring connection and meaning to others through inspiring giftware. For more information, visit

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