Benefits of the EMC Programme: Leading Yourself in a Crisis

Andrea Bogusz

As a former EMC participant I was asked if I’d like to contribute a testimonial of my experience. And I did it the “classical” way by sharing my own story and by listing some of the benefits so that you can better evaluate if this programme would be right for you.

But I would not be an EMC alumna if I did not share with you THE main takeaway from this programme for critical times like these.

While writing these lines, the corona crisis has hit us all over the world. Some of us have been through crises before and it won’t be the last one. After all, change is a constant in our life, disruptions are increasing, and everybody deals with it differently. 

I am wondering, however, why I am experiencing it differently than many people around me and asked myself why I don’t seem to be as fearful, panicky, or in denial as some others around me or on TV. 

Increasing your stability AND flexibility

I would not say that I am joyful, particularly given the high death toll of this crisis, and I also go up and down the emotional ladder. However, I am mainly calm, focused, enjoy organising the current challenges and am in quite good spirits. In short, I am stable and flexible. Like a bamboo.

How come? Yes, I know that my bare resilience score is quite “good” to let me cope with the uncertainties evoked by a crisis. But is that all? And was it always that way?



Resilience is key

Engaging with the topic of resilience again through my coaching work with Karsten Drath at Leadership Choices GmbH, and also listening to Declan Fitzsimons, INSEAD Professor and faculty on EMC, in last week’s webinar "Leading in a Crisis", I realised that these two inputs were reminders of the EMC Programme.

Declan underlined the importance of managing your resources in a crisis and Karsten’s research is summed up in a model containing eight factors of resilience and self-management.     


Reprinted with permission from Leadership Choices GmbH

EMC: a safe space to learn and practice

And why reminders? Actually, this approach is at the core of the EMC. Not only does the curriculum pick up on the model’s eight aspects throughout the two years but we also constantly practiced them with respective activities. You can build and increase your resilience level so that you can lead yourself and others much more effectively in a crisis. 

So, coming back to my question earlier I can honestly say that I usually did not deal with a crisis as effectively as I do now. Thanks to the EMC experience, I consciously and unconsciously use techniques of managing my energy level, reflect on my mindset, adjust my attitude, etc..

Additionally, I can also cater to the needs of others around me so that I can support leading through this and future crises. And if I need some support myself, my former EMC peers are still there.

The EMC programme empowers you to grow your individual and collective resilience. If that is not a main benefit to take from the EMC, then I don’t know what is!

Stay both strong and flexible like a bamboo,