Meet Jolie Wills, speaker for our program on Workforce Resilience on April 6.
Jolie is the co-founder and director of Hummingly.
Jolie, your website explains that Hummingly was inspired by your experience working in post-disaster environments. What led you to that work?
I’m a cognitive scientist, so I’ve always been interested in how cumulative stress and pressure impact our performance – as humans it’s a side effect of how we’re biologically set up and our organizations consist of a bunch of humans. What I didn’t anticipate is the twist that my professional and personal life had in store for me when the Christchurch earthquakes happened – Christchurch being my home city. After decades being immersed in disasters and interviewing crisis leaders all over the world, we knew what was needed to prepare teams to perform well, especially under pressure. This expertise wasn’t getting into the hands of teams who needed or wanted it, so we packaged it up.
Are there any misconceptions about resilience that you frequently encounter?
There are plenty. Which to pick? One is that resilience is solely the personal responsibility of the employee. We know that factors at the organizational and team levels impact the wellbeing and resilience of our people. Hummingly has a triple responsibility model for wellbeing and resilience with actions needed at the individual, team, and organizational levels. This is fitting because if we get it wrong, the risks are significant and the ramifications will be felt at all three levels – not just with the individual. The exciting piece is that when we get it right, growth, wellbeing, and performance benefits are felt right through the organization.
Are you willing to share a fun fact about yourself?
I’m not sure if it’s a fun fact but definitely an unusual one. I was the only girl at an all-boys school for a couple of years. With the skew in education at the time, that’s what it took to pursue my love of math and science. It’s a time I identify as resilience-building, that’s for sure!
Click here to register for the Workforce Resilience in Times of Adversity program on April 6 at Blake Street Tavern.