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Adaptiveness: not just for teenagers anymore

Posted by Stephen Parry on Feb 1, 2016 5:01:26 PM

During my research into the value of adaptiveness as a learned behaviour, I’ve often wondered why some easily accept adaptivity as a metric for organisational change while others never quite “get” it.

So I had a bit of a chuckle when I came across an article on adaptability as it relates to the developing teenage brain.

The article posits teenagers have minds that are naturally adaptive. And that this adaptability plays a critical role in their development into adults.

The article goes on to suggest...

“They are trying to assess and understand the world around them. And taking risks, breaking the mold, questioning authority are all characteristics of the adaptive mind.”

That is quite true. Adaptive minds do indeed look beyond the convention of ‘what is’ to consider other possibilities and strategies. Although their willingness to consider untested waters may get them tagged as ‘rebels’, it is the actions of adaptable leaders and their “seemingly reckless demeanor” that is crucial to the survival and growth of any organisation they are in.

Even as adaptive processes are being accepted and implemented they are often not taken seriously as a driver of business growth. To the old guard adaptability is a simply a buzzword to promote the perception that an organisation values new ways of thinking rather than actually embracing them.

Organisational growth is best served however, by incorporating adaptiveness at every level of a business environment.

So should a business start filling boardrooms with teenagers? No, of course not. But incorporating some of the open-minded spirit of youth into a business mindset clearly has its merits.

Adaptiveness: it’s not just for teenagers anymore.

Read the article I referenced here.

Topics: Customer Value Principles