In today’s dynamic world, the greatest skill any team can possess is the ability to be more adaptable.
We’ve all seen it firsthand during the Covid-19 pandemic. Any external factor can force you to entirely change your way of working overnight. Since we do not have any control over the changes happening around us, the only thing we can do is prepare to predict and adapt to any change.
Change can be intimidating – but it is inevitable. Teams today need to be trained to effectively respond and react to different challenges and situations. And it’s not as simple as just being ‘more flexible’ or constantly monitoring teams.
Why Teams Need to be More Adaptable
Being more adaptable ensures that you can handle everything that comes your way. And it’s one of the most important skills that you need to inculcate in your team.
Teams that are more adaptable to change are more productive, organised, and efficient in their work. Let’s take a look at some other benefits:
- Enhances problem solving: Being more adaptable requires teams to practice facing different hurdles and overcoming them on their own. As team members consistently bounce back from various challenges, they become better at understanding situations and finding the right solution to problems.
- Reduced burnout: The ability to predict future challenges ensures that teams are prepared for everything. And when you’re prepared, you’re less likely to be stressed or overwhelmed with work. Adaptability brings a broader ‘outside-the-box’ perspective within your team.
- Makes you a better leader: Managers that are more adaptable can easily guide teams through everyday problems and challenges. You will also be able to understand each team member better and can efficiently communicate with them.
Make your Team More Adaptable to Change
Teams that can easily adapt to change work on a set of frameworks, processes, and skill sets that allow them to quickly transition into it. And the good news is – it can easily be developed by your team too. Let’s dive in!
Practice what you preach
As a good manager, you need to put in practice everything that you expect from your team. If you want them to be more adaptable, you need to be the first one to be open to change and new ideas. Your team can only reach where you take them.
To model adaptability in your behaviour, here are some things you need to keep in mind:
- View and present challenges as opportunities
- Be receptive to new ideas and innovation
- Respond positively and quickly to any change in environment
- Keep a calm mindset when difficulties arise
- Always be open to learning new skills and developing the old ones
- Be curious and encourage teams to ask more questions
Have clear goals
To deliver the best outcome, teams need to be focused on the primary goals. And in times of difficulty, these objectives can shift and get blurry.
To effectively respond to change, it is essential that all team members are aligned and have their priorities set straight. This becomes easier when teams are built on common and clear objectives and goals.
Clear goals also ensure that you’ve defined what ‘success’ is for your team. And they also build the foundation for the expectations that you have from team members.
We’ve all witnessed it in some way or the other – when people work together, they are able to achieve more. And when teams collaborate and work together everyday, they are able to accomplish more.
When things get tough, encourage your team members to reach out to each other or offer help. It helps build a positive environment where everyone’s knowledge is pooled together and ideas and solutions flow easily.
Teams that collaborate well with each other are able to better handle difficulties and change in their way of working.
Try and try again
You may not realise it yet but it is critical for teams to have an environment where they are not afraid to try and fail. Now we are not trying to say that you should encourage your teams to let go of your current ways and adapt everything new. But you need to encourage them to try new approaches and ideas for non-critical tasks at work.
Team members won’t be intimidated by challenges once you eliminate their fears. And will turn everything into a learning experience for them. It will enable them to be more adaptable to change and embrace it will open arms.
Prepare your teams to be more adaptable
Remember before anything else, it is you who drives the team. And by taking a proactive approach to change, you can help them in easily adapting to change.
For most of us, adaptability is a constant and on-going cycle. The mere essence of adaptability lies in being on your toes and reacting quickly and appropriately. Building a team that can adapt to these changing priorities makes all the difference between success and failure in today’s world.