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Keys to Improving Strategic Adaptability

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In nature, every action has its equal and opposite reaction. Physics demands that we adjust to stimuli. We either adapt or we fail. In business, things don’t play out in quite such black and white terms, though. Instead, we have to implement reactive strategies if we hope to survive market conditions.

And while no one can predict the future, strategic adaptability means doing the next best thing. It means being prepared with the procedures and business practices that allow you to adjust with agility and purpose.

Getting there requires understanding. Only then can you apply the key you need to improve your strategic adaptability.

What Strategic Adaptability Means

Let’s start by defining strategic adaptability itself.

Strategic adaptability, put simply, is the ability to react effectively to unexpected change. This entails thorough planning and risk management procedures designed to help a company thrive even during an emergency. From market shifts to natural disasters, there are no limits to the events you need to plan for.

The COVID-19 pandemic was a perfect example of this. Suddenly, businesses had to shift their procedures to keep employees and customers safe. Without a plan in place for accommodating remote work or implementing a delivery service, companies found themselves struggling to adapt.

Strategic adaptability gives businesses the tools they need to be agile. Usually, this entails a combination of tech tools and risk mitigation processes, well-built teams, and thorough training. You’ll have to consider everything from the legal to the practical as you implement a business model that is agile enough to counter the challenges you’ll face.

To improve your strategic adaptability, implement a series of best practices and constantly evaluate your methods. With the right toolkit, you’ll be better prepared to mitigate risks.

Keys for Improving Adaptability

Your keys for improving your strategic adaptability will vary depending on your business model. However, just about every business professional can apply an agile approach to the ways they operate across their company, from working with suppliers to managing crises.

Here are some of these key strategies to employ when improving your adaptability:

1. Make agility a core value of your company.

While it’s all well and good to have a traditional method of handling business, you cannot rely on long-running procedures to help you through every situation that comes your way. Rather, you should make agility a core value of your company from the beginning

By emphasizing situational awareness and agility, you’ll set your employees up for success in navigating new challenges. This will open up every meeting to innovative discussions and help ensure that your business changes with the times rather than stubbornly moving through them. Your success in practicing agility as a core value, however, will depend on how good your team is at problem-solving.

2. Hire adaptable problem solvers.

Strategic adaptability should be planned for at every stage of your business’s growth. This is especially true when hiring new team members. The right staff will show a commitment to agile problem-solving through their experience, believing that there is no one way to innovate for business success.

Look for innovative individuals as you hire new employees, asking for examples of how they adapted business practices to unexpected circumstances in the past. The right team can elevate your strategic potential, but it always helps to have data on your side.

3. Embrace business analytics.

Business analytics is where data comes in, and it is every company’s best friend when building an adaptable model. But what exactly is business analytics?

Business analytics is the process of evaluating patterns in business data to draw out insights that can improve the way you conduct your organization. Analytics is one of the most important keys you’ll use for implementing strategic adaptability, as data can show you exactly where and how you might need to improve to accommodate changing trends and customer needs.

Embrace business analytics through data collection and management software, and never stop evaluating the effectiveness of your analytics techniques. With data on your side, you’ll be able to adapt more quickly and easily than your competitors.

4. Innovate constantly.

Innovation is one of the best ways to avoid or resolve a crisis. For instance, when COVID-19 struck, it was the businesses at the forefront of innovating new contactless or socially distanced methods that were able to keep operating. Movie theaters sold popcorn at curbsides. Restaurants adopted delivery systems. Retail stores put up plexiglass shields.

In a crisis like a pandemic, managing ideal business solutions effectively is all about innovation. So stay calm, be flexible, and trust that your team is skilled enough to present solutions you might not have thought of.

5.    Make training and upskilling a priority.

For a trusting business environment that is prepared to innovate, however, you have to make sure your team is skilled. This means training. Make it a priority to provide your team with the skills they need for effective problem-solving. In the modern business world, this will likely entail data management and analytics, tech literacy, and data security. Upskill and improve your team as much as possible for a more agile business model.

These are just a few of the keys you’ll need to hold if you hope to improve your strategic adaptability. With a business committed to agility from the beginning and staffed with analytical tools and talented problem solvers, there isn’t a disruption that you won’t be able to handle.

For the uncertain future, integrating adaptable change management strategies is an absolute must. Start by understanding what strategic adaptability means, then use these keys to unlock a more agile business model.

Noah Rue

Noah Rue is a journalist and content writer, fascinated with the intersection between global health, personal wellness, and modern technology. When he isn't searching out his next great writing opportunity, Noah likes to shut off his devices and head to the mountains to disconnect.

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