We’re living in an era of risk and instability. Modern technologies, globalisation, and greater transparency are all upending the business environment and giving many CEOs a deep sense of uneasiness.
Today, the competition is so steep that market leaders are too precarious in the way they do business.
Businesses are operating in an ever-changing digital landscape, in which things are evolving quickly with new technologies. Disruption naturally involves flux: of adopting new and smart technologies to conduct business, to relinquish those which no longer produce any value, to access the right people and skills, and finally to adjust priorities.
The companies that fail to move with the time will be left behind. That’s the reason why businesses need to learn the adaptive way of business for getting an edge over their competitors. Adapting will help them in continually rethinking to maximise new opportunities.
What exactly is Adaptation?
Adaptation is fundamentally local in nature, somebody who experiments first at a specific place and time. It’s also fundamentally global in nature because if this experiment succeeds, it’ll be further communicated, chosen, amplified, and honed for the business.
Companies, therefore, must create environments that encourage the knowledge flow, autonomy, diversity, sharing, risk-taking, and flexibility on which adaptation thrives.
Further, having a flexible structure and dispersal of decision rights are powerful levers for increasing adaptability. Generally, adaptive companies must replace permanent silos and functions with some modular units that freely communicate and recombine according to the situation at hand.
For instance, Netflix values nine core skills and behaviours in its employees: judgement, communication, innovation, curiosity, impact, passion, courage, selflessness, and honesty. The executive of the company considers that a prominent workplace is full of ‘stunning colleagues’ who incorporate these qualities. Thus the Netflix employee management model is to ‘increase employee freedom as they grow, rather than limiting it, that’ll continually help them in attracting innovative people’. Netflix does not maintain a vacation policy, nor do they keep track of time, the company focuses on what work must be done not how many hours or days are worked.
Why embrace Adaptive business?
According to research conducted by Forrester, agility alone isn’t enough to outperform the competition. Businesses must have the ability to adapt as well. A strategy working on both adaptability and agility will surely be useful in getting an edge over the competition. When such a scenario is achieved, the report suggests that a business can reasonably hope to enjoy 3.2 times higher revenue growth.
As discussed above, adaptive philosophies are just about dealing with change; they focus on getting results in constantly evolving environments. An adaptive company tends to know where they’re headed, and if the plan changes, they will easily keep up with it. They aim at figuring out the right approach for different situations.
How to embrace adaptiveness in business?
It’s not an immediate process to adopt an adaptive leadership style; it’s more about evolving along the way. Here are some actions that can be followed to lead your business in becoming more adaptive:
If you’re ready to embrace adaptiveness in your business, then you must learn to be insight-driven and keep up with the current demands of your target group. Since the digitalisation, companies who have preempted what their potential customers’ demand have thrived in the business. Their focused research and insights-driven work helped them in meeting up the exact requirement of their consumers.
With continuously increasing technologies, there exist a ton of ways to go about this. Either you can do it yourself or even reach out to other professionals. A proactive business transformation consultant can help you with all the insights required for you and your business to shine in the market.
Building an influential digital culture
Digitisation is here, but is your team ready to adopt its culture?
The digital wave has revolutionised the way people or businesses work. Research shows that 90% of digital transformations end in failure due to the lack of an influential digital culture. It doesn’t matter how eager you’re to evolve if your team isn’t sure about it.
So, if you’re ready to change the way you work, then you must make sure your team not only understand but also accepts the changes. If your organisation is unwilling to recognise or embrace the culture, find out the reasons behind them not being interested in the transformation. Once you know the reason behind it, figure out exactly how can you work on it and ensure the team is as interested and invested in the transformation just as you are.
You can include employees in company decisions whenever you can and think of the ways that can help them feel excited about embracing new strategies and innovative technologies.
If you want to become an adaptive business, you have to create an adaptive culture. Period.
Focus on Value
Focus more on meaningful work than putting your efforts on unproductive tasks.
An adaptive business will aim at focusing all their efforts on meaningful work that can actively help them push forward. Doing this will help you become more aware of your inefficiencies, manage your current distractions and cut out all the low-value tasks.
By identifying and limiting their daily interruptions and routine tasks, employees can pour their full attention into the cognitively demanding work that will assist them in actually creating value for their business.
Yet again, embracing technology can lend a helping hand here. Track your productive business time to recognise the workflow inefficiencies. You can even set particular boundaries on such technology-driven tools to build a more productive relationship with your tech. Moreover, using tools for automating your shallow and repetitive tasks such as managing emails, creating timesheets can free up a lot of productive work time.
In case you’re confused about the process of how can your company become adaptive, you can also take help of business consulting services to get an idea of how and when can you add the adaptiveness factor to your business.