Sunday, April 21, 2019

Design for Adaptability

Adaptability is the ability of people or organizations to adapt themselves smoothly and fast to changed circumstances.

Digital means fast-paced changes, continuous disruptions, overwhelming growth of information, and shortened business life cycle. Companies need to have an in-depth understanding of organizational design and development to improve business maturity. Compared to the traditional organizations with an overly rigid hierarchy or strictly pyramidal structure, digital organizations today are flatter, hybrid and more responsive to changes. Organizational adaptation is the ability to be highly responsive to the fast-changing business environment. High mature companies are designed for change and designed for innovating.

Enforce information-driven process feeding and sustaining cycles to improve organizational responsiveness and adaptability: Consider the digital organization as the self-organized but interlaced and hyper-connected ecosystem, the highly responsive company is highly conscious about what’ happening in their environment, observe with subtlety, keep alert, respond promptly, grasp opportunities timely and manage risks effectively. What enables a self-adaptive organism is a technology-enabled and information-driven business process feeding and sustaining cycle to improve organizational responsiveness. The business responsiveness and changeability based on self-adaptation is the capability to adapt to the change promptly and make "conscious" business choices seamlessly. Information management is the nerve system of the company to make such wise choices. Thus, nowadays, companies across the industrial sectors declare they are in the information management business. They need to break down silos in certain way, keep information and idea flow frictionlessly, and manage information and knowledge holistically so that they can truly abstract the customer insight or business foresight almost real time, adapt to changes with faster speed, tailor customers’ need, know what they want even before they know themselves, meet their expectation, collaborate with business counterparts timely and leverage tailored approach to fit specific business circumstances, and ultimately respond to the external environment with speed.

Renovate the traditional organizational structure and processes to ensure the digital workplace is fluid, live, informative, creative and productive: The goal of organizational design and structure tuning is to make hierarchical systems adaptive so that they can adapt themselves to the changed circumstances quickly and smoothly. Often flatter structures will help to speed up organizational response to changes. Fundamentally, running a business is an iterative problem-solving continuum. Develop mutual interest communities to identify common yet flexible processes that introduce focus and create a sense of urgency. So large groups of people can interact and be able to divide and conquer complex business problems and form collective capabilities to solve problems and accelerate business speed. With emerging digital technologies, platforms and collaboration tools, ideally, the two structures, hierarchy, and relationship structure can wrap around each other with the mix of the physical building and virtual team setting. The goal is to make the overly restrictive hierarchical system adaptive to improve cross-functional communication, mass collaboration, enforce organizational flexibility and resilience to ensure high responsiveness and accountability.

Highly adaptive organizations can facilitate social communities for harnessing innovation and provide self-organizing methods and tools to collectively deliver results: Organizations are made by people and operated for people, people are the most crucial element in the self-adaptive organism of the digital organization. The business change objectives depend on the human objective: Thus, either individually or collectively, people must adapt themselves, from mindset, attitude, to behavior fast to changing circumstances by learning, exploring, and achieving. Change is a continuum; either for individuals or businesses, once you accept that life will be a constant shift going on around us, and then, you are able to seek ways and means of adjusting your perspectives and those around you. Develop adaptability by negotiating win-win outcomes, increasing self-confidence and performance in others, getting yourself and others into actions. At the organizational level, self-adaptation is faster if made with the full involvement of people in organizational change, starting from relations between people, tuning business processes to enforce communication, designing for trust, and improving the changeability of the business. Ultimately, the goals of organizational design and structural innovation are to increase employees’ engagement, productivity, customers’ satisfaction, and overall business performance and maturity.

Adaptability is the ability of people or organizations to adapt themselves smoothly and fast to changed circumstances. A highly adaptive organization is to design and create an organization in which change is the new norm and happens the whole time with the self-organizing mechanism embedded in key processes, and culture of learning and change as the DNA of the company. Thereby, it can respond to the challenges of a more complex, interconnected, and interdependent business world, deliver faster and increasing market share and tailored approach to fit specific circumstances and achieve high-performance business results.


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