I’ve seen several LinkedIn posts and heard many discussions where people question the difference and relationship between Business Continuity Management (BCM) and Resilience.
BCM vs. Resilience, its sounds as though Harry Hill will at any minute shout FIGHT! In fact BCM and resilience are not in competition of at odds, they are inextricably linked.
Business continuity is to resilience what sugar is to cake – BCM is just one ingredient. It is important however to recognise that BCM is just one of the tools which organisations can use to achieve resilience.
BCM on its own is highly operational and is concerned with how you can continue to do business. Resilience is strategic and integrates many different disciplines to avoid disruption where possible and respond adaptively and competitively before the case for change becomes desperate.
Business continuity is a process (something you do) and so it is easy to standardise. Resilience is a cultural ability or organisational aim (something you are) and so is very difficult to standardise. All organisations achieve resilience in different ways, it’s up to each organisation to find their balance between resilience and efficiency and to continuously tweak and maintain it.
My thoughts then turn to all of the BCM departments which have recently re-badged themselves as Resilience Teams. If they have all adopted a strategic focus, integrating previously disparate disciplines and are now enabling their organisations to adapt to conditions as they emerge, oscillating between pre-planned responses and adaptive innovation – I’ll be very surprised.
Just something to think about as we move through 2012 and consider whether talking the resilience talk is enough!