Blog Article

Are you future-proofed against extinction?

Posted by Henriette Rothschild

Henriette Rothschild

The business terrain is volatile like no other time before, and one lesson is clear – this isn’t likely to change any time soon. Globally we are dealing with tectonic shifts impacting traditional business models (e.g. in the retail, print media and manufacturing sectors). On top of this is the power shift from the mature economies of Europe and the US, to the growth economies of Asia and Latin America. Local leaders are also being faced with issues surrounding a high dollar, challenging regulatory requirements and a ’patchwork economy’ which continues to get even more patchy as commodity prices soften.

But there is good news. Unlike a simple downturn there can be significant opportunity and upside in volatility. In fact we don’t need to look too far for examples of success during these uncertain times – organisations such as Virgin Australia, Fonterra and Wesfarmers come to mind as organisations able to position their organisation effectively through the volatility.

The key challenge for leaders is to continue to meet the evolving needs of their customers, while simultaneously balancing their responsibilities to their shareholders/stakeholders. Quite simply, what will differentiate the winners from others desperately struggling to keep up with the pace of transformation can be broadly classified as ‘organisational agility’. The ability to adapt and effectively respond to market shifts. And contrary to popular belief, when it comes to agility, size does not matter.

Based on our work with and observations of agile global and local organisations, we believe that there are eight building blocks of organisational agility. These eight building blocks are discussed in detail in Hay Group Pacific’s 2013 FOCUS publication and fall under three key areas:

  1. How an organisation thinks (about its customers and market)
  2. The internal environment leaders create (and the culture this facilitates)
  3. The way decisions are made (and actioned)

Does your organisation think, feel and act like an agile organisation?


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