Adaptive Organization - Characteristics and Ways to Construct

Adaptive Organization - Characteristics and Ways to Construct

August 18, 2021

As defined by Deloitte, the Adaptable Organization represents a paradigm change in the philosophy of operations and management. This change allows global large-scale organizations to function with a start-up approach and lead modern employer practices which encourage business agility through powerful team networks. In the context of businesses and governmental organizations, we found several lessons that can be learned from institutions that have become "adaptive" in the rapidly moving world in which we all live and operate.

Adaptive Organization - Characteristics and Ways to Construct
Adaptive Organization - Characteristics and Ways to Construct

If COVID-19 has shown corporate leaders anything, it is the struggle to lead an organization that is not adaptable and resilient in times of volatility. In an unpredictable, dynamic and contradictory environment, companies are no longer able to rely on conventional long-term strategic guidelines to thrive and expand. Organizations now need to rapidly recognize new business trends and react quickly to exploit future opportunities or to combat growing challenges. Adaptive businesses have a technological and organizational agility to do this and environments which promote flexibility, deeper involvement, inspiration, teamwork and employee autonomy, resulting in better production and retention of workers. 

A Forrester research reveals that adaptive companies expand 3,2 times revenue growth compared to industry averages. MIT data also indicate that agile companies are increasing their sales 37% more rapidly and generating 30% more benefit than non-agile companies. 

So, how can managers adapt to unparalleled challenges and generate more creativity, employment and high-line and bottom-line growth? Some would claim that modern threats demand entirely new management strategies. 
Define the vital characteristics of adaptive organizations 

We found many characteristics that seem to allow these organizations to respond to the fiscal, social and other changes regularly that exist around them. For example:

  • The willingness to work efficiently together with all staff, teams and classes in an organization.  
  • The opportunity to network with others outside the company with all workers at all levels to obtain new sources of valuable knowledge and beneficial insights in the process. This involves networking with consumers and other partners, specialists in other markets, including competitors. 
  • The freedom to invent and experiment without fear of “reprisal” or marginalization for all staff at all stages.  
  • The ability to listen to urgent problems addressed by any employees. Employees usually find their jobs rewarding when an organization allows them to raise their voices and take initiatives in solving issues.

Define the vital characteristics of adaptive organizations 

After identifying some of these “attributes of adaptiveness,” the conversation focused on what many accepted as a key to establish organizations that incorporate these attributes into their structure: empowering from the bottom up.

Here are the top 10 ways you can build an adaptive culture in your organization, according to John Kotter and James Heskett’s Corporate Culture and Performance:

  1. Have a sense of crisis and a need for reform
  2. Converse frequently with your employees
  3. Encourage “out of the box thinkers” 
  4. Strengthen innovation’s significance 
  5. Create and preserve the reputation of your employees 
  6. Concentrate equally on consumers, staff and shareholders’ performance 
  7. Establish leadership or the opportunities to produce change and bring reform as an important focus at ALL levels 
  8. When necessary, decentralize decision-making 
  9. Promote and degrade carefully if possible 
  10. Work as a servant leader 

Both employee retention and customer satisfaction will reach new levels given leaders followed these recommendations. But the way isn’t easy as numerous organizations have not always dedicated themselves to the discipline, encouragement, creativity, insight, and commitment to ideals needed to create communities which are genuinely resilient to change. With growing degrees of uncertainty and obstacles, leaders are well advised to make this unorthodox solution become a “new normal“. 

As Vietnam’s leading HR consultancy firm, Talentnet applies state-of-the-art technologies to its framework, a profound understanding of labor law, and associated HR solutions. Contact Talentnet today so we can help you build a more adaptive & responsive organization in the new world.

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