Rising Every Time We Fall: Organizational Fortitude and Response to Adversities

Smith C., Rondi E., De Massis A., Nordqvist M.

sej cover

The role of organizational resilience enabling firms to respond to adversity and survive has become ever more critical in the wake of an increasingly unpredictable external environment.

Yet, while we understand the importance of resilience in responding to a major adversity, we have little appreciation for how firms are affected and react when facing multiple adversities over time, or how multilevel factors might impose on this process. These are crucial issues given that adversities are not necessarily single, isolated, or infrequent episodes.

By studying a long-established family firm in the United Kingdom that experienced four major adversities, we identify the process that enabled it not only to survive but also to thrive. In this qualitative study, we introduce the notion of organizational fortitude to describe the approach that a firm develops to cope with the challenges of multiple unexpected adversities and highlight how multilevel factors combine to foster organizational fortitude.


  • Smith, C., Rondi, E., De Massis, A., & Nordqvist, M. (2023). Rising Every Time We Fall: Organizational Fortitude and Response to Adversities. Journal of Management, 01492063231164969.
  • Link: https://doi.org/10.1177/01492063231164969