The importance of adaptability in the workforce

 

One of the new challenges of many organizations in the recent years is the necessity to become adaptive despite years, or even decades, of routine. While many large corporations, such as Walmart, have successfully adapted their work culture and organizational strategies to take into account recent technological advancements, other companies, such as Sears, were not able to adapt in time.

Although the need for organizations as a whole to adapt is increasing, adaptability of the workforce is becoming more and more important. Adaptive employees are individuals who will be able to obtain new skills at short notice, be open to change, be resilient to stress and anxiety when changing routines, and who are able to improvise to face unprecedented challenges.

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is most adaptable to change. - Charles Darwin

Why are these skills ideal in an employee?

Employees who are adaptable will not see problems as a difficulty, but rather as a challenge. They will typically rationalize problems and provide possible logical outcomes to solve an issue. Adaptive individuals are generally creative, allowing them to think outside the box. They are not distracted, confused, or stressed by operational changes and will swiftly modify their methods to fit the new procedures.

Leadership

Adaptive employees can generally become great managers. They do not panic in difficult situations and may find themselves naturally leading others when facing new challenges. While highly adaptive individuals can be transactional or transformational leaders, they are very rarely passive leaders.

To conclude

It is generally an asset for an organization to focus on hiring highly adaptive individuals. Being adaptable is a personality characteristic that can significantly increase the odds of success within a company. These employees value others' contributions, enjoy innovation, strive to improve, and tend to keep a positive mind-set despite regular challenges.

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