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Stories

Elements of responsiveness

“The way we look at responsive organizations is we look at characteristics that make you able to change in real-time: putting purpose ahead of profit, putting empowerment ahead of controlling people, valuing transparency even over privacy. Because if learning is paramount, then you have to give something up in order to drive that agenda.”

-Aaron Dignan, Founder, The Ready

In pursuit of adaptivity, companies are decentralizing decision-making and empowering their people with information. This increases engagement and enables continuous learning.

For example, long term planning, in and of itself, is no longer as valued as it once was, because things change so quickly. Perhaps a company’s annual plan for a year now lasts two months before it has to be reconfigured because things have changed. Change, and the inherent ability of an organization to respond to it, will be more important for the future than traditional planning cycles.

Making smaller, faster bets, welcoming smaller failures and learning from them can actually lower the risk of getting big things wrong. The key is the organization’s ability to learn and respond, understanding what the data says and empowering its teams to experiment as they figure out what strategies to develop next.

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Text by Suzanne Choney. Videos by Microsoft and Pop Tech.