Just how important is adaptability to business or career success? According to a 2013 study by DeVry University’s Career Advisory Board, 93 percent of hiring managers say that senior-level job seekers need to demonstrate the ability to adapt in order to cope with the ever-changing workplace. This type of senior leader—one who has learned how to roll with the punches—is essential to guiding 21st century businesses.
Gallup’s famous StrengthsFinder talent assessment tool, which includes adaptability as a key dimension, defines the trait as "the ability to live in the present, freely and willingly able to respond to the demands and changes of the moment." Adaptable people are flexible and don’t view the future as a set plan or a fixed destination.
But most company cultures today, even small-business ones, aren't as adaptable as they need to be—they're often ruled by the status quo and “standard operating procedure.”
If you run your business with that mentality, you may find yourself encountering more problems than necessary and having a difficult time adapting to market changes. Rapid technological advances have also increased the speed with which you must make key decisions, and relevant changes must be integrated into your business culture if you want to survive.
Take 3D printing, for instance. Once 3D printing becomes part of the mainstream, manufacturers and their complex networks of suppliers and distributors must start thinking of their work differently if they're to succeed.
Unfortunately, disruptive technologies like 3D printing are derailing more businesses instead of positively transforming them. Without enough adaptable leaders, businesses are falling behind.
For the rest of the piece, have a look at the full post at the AMEX OpenForum.