AGILE MANAGEMENT IS THE SURVIVAL KIT FOR DYNAMIC FUTURE

Aurangzeb Soharwardi

With the changing technological ,socio-economic , political trends, Digital disruptions and  particularly the impact of Covid 19 has changed the world altogether and There is absolutely no doubt that to meet these challenges in the organizations , Agile organization and the Agile management are the ONLY key to success .

Change is the only constant and the contemporary time has proved that only there is only the survival of the fittest which immediately adapts to the changes and manages crises well. In Corona times ,what to talk about the small and medium companies ,even the big giant companies could not handle the change and the crises well .

The sustainability of the companies and employees which will not be adaptive to the repid changes .A team of researchers like Wouter Aghina, Karin Ahlback, Aaron De Smet, Gerald Lackey, Michael Lurie, Monica Murarka, and Christopher Hands comb described that latest trends and are dramatically influencing and  changing how organizations and employees work. What, then, will be the dominant organizational paradigm for the next 100 years to come.

How will companies balance stability and dynamism? Moreover, which companies will dominate their market and attract the best talent. In their article “Agility: It rhymes with stability” they discussed that the future has to be Agile. The Agile Organization is dawning as the new dominant Organizational paradigm.

There Research shows that agile organizations have a 70 percent chance of being in the top quartile of organizational health, the best indicator of long-term performance. Moreover, such companies simultaneously achieve greater customer centricity, faster time to market, higher revenue growth, lower costs, and a more engaged workforce.

As a result agility, while still in its early days, is catching fire. This was confirmed in a recent McKinsey Quarterly survey report of 2,500 business leaders. An agile organization is a term applied to organizations which are quick in responding to changes in the marketplace or environment.

More latest happenings are All stakeholders’ demand patterns are evolving rapidly, Established businesses and industries are being commoditization or replaced through digitization , Accelerating digitization and democratization of information , Organizations need a distinctive value proposition to acquire and retain the best talent , Value Stream Management — a sequence of activities an organization undertakes to deliver on a customer need is new, but important and the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) continues to grow.

Michael J. Arena
University of Pennsylvania,in his article in Management and Business review writes that One of the biggest challenges facing organizations today is the need to be agile. To achieve this goal, leaders must seek a deeper understanding of the power of social interaction in furthering the flow of ideas, information, and insight.

Michael Arena explains how building relational structures that foster 4D connections, discovery, development, diffusion, and disruption, can usher in the new, innovative ideas and concepts necessary to positively disrupt. Organizations today vitally need to be agile in the face of digital disruption.

According to a recent study, 87 percent of executives believe that digital technologies will disrupt their industry to either a great or moderate extent. Only 44 percent of these same executives believe that their companies are doing enough to prepare.

The agile organization is focused on customization . Agile Business Modeling is a new, lightweight approach that combines business development with agile principles to build a flexible organization capable of reacting fast to unpredictable changes.

Agile processes are there in this type of organization which are processes that help teams provide quick and unpredictable responses to the feedback they receive on their project or products. Teams assess the project in regular meetings called sprints or iterations.

 Michael J. Arena in his MBR article further writes that in this era of disruption, it is social capital that allows organizations to adapt in real time. Agility turns out to be more social than structural. This is where Adaptive Space comes into play.

Adaptive space can be thought of as the relational, emotional, and sometimes physical space necessary for people to freely explore, exchange, and debate ideas. Power of network dynamics has to be explored and nurtured through positive reinforcements.

He further says that Discovery Connections are the bridges that connect different groups, allowing organizations to overcome insularity. Development Connections encourage the sharing and refinement of ideas within cohesive teams. Cohesive groups are composed of many redundant connections which often result in deeply trusting relationships.

Diffusion Connections help to move ideas beyond their small development pockets by expanding them across the organization. Disruption Connections help to break down organizational roadblocks that stifle bold innovation.

They disrupt the existing structures to make way for the formal endorsement of new solutions and innovations. Disruption connections enable the creative destruction that combats the status quo. Adaptive performance of the companies and individual employees has to be better in future work environment which refers to adjusting to and understanding change in the workplace.

An employee who is versatile is valued and important in the success of an organization. Employers seek employees with high adaptability, due to the positive outcomes that follow, such as excellent work performance, work attitude, and ability to handle stress.

Employees, who display high adaptive performance in an organization, tend to have more advantages in career opportunities unlike employees who are not adaptable to change. In previous literature, Pulakos and colleagues established eight dimensions of adaptive performance. Handling emergencies and crisis situations: making quick decisions when faced with an emergency.

Handling stress in the workforce: keeping composed and focused on task at hand when dealing with high demand tasks , Creative problem solving: thinking outside the boundary limits, and innovatively to solve a problem.

Dealing with uncertain and unpredictable work situations: able to become productive despite the occurrence of unknown situations.Learning and manipulating new technology, task, and procedures: approach new methods and technological constructs in order to accomplish a work task.

Demonstrating interpersonal adaptability: being considerate of other people’s points of view when working in a team to accomplish a certain goal , Demonstrating cultural adaptability: being respectful and considerate of different cultural backgrounds.Demonstrating physically oriented adaptability: physically adjusting one’s self to better fit the surrounding environment.

The future Agile Organization has got to have these characteristics like Agile mind set ,Clarity & Objective Focus , Customized offerings , Empowered high performance Teams ,Rapid decision making and Crises handling processes , Dynamic and Passionate workers ,Latest technology , Data-Driven Continuous Improvement , Effective crises handling system, Adaptive performance mechanism , change managing & supporting culture, Creative learning environment . The future is digital world and for agile to be effective in the digital workplace there are two key elements, said Bart Mroz, CEO of digital commerce consultancy SUMO Heavy ,Open Communication and Collaborative environment which foster creative expansions . The Organizations have to move from Agile teams to Agile Organizations which will not only change the context , scope and practices but will also require Agile Management to manage all functions in Digital and other disruptions. Leadership and adaptive decision making is gaining more and more importance. Adaptive management (AM), also known as adaptive resource management (ARM) or adaptive environmental assessment and management (AEAM), is linked with Agile Management and is a structured, iterative process of robust decision making in the face of uncertainty, with an aim to reducing uncertainty over time via system monitoring. Adaptive management is a tool which should be used not only to change a system, but also to learn about the system.[1] Because adaptive management is based on a learning process. Two ecologists at The University of British Columbia, C.S. Holling[1] and C.J Walters[3] further developed the adaptive management approach as they distinguished between passive and active adaptive management. Agile Management is a methodology basically used in project management and it uses short development cycles called “sprints” to focus on continuous improvement in the development of a product or service. Agile Management is the interplay of Leadership,Administration,Supervision and Management with a very specialized skill set enabling flexibility. Particularly the Agile C Suit Managers have to be more humanistic and must delegate to empower subordinates . It is highly discouraged to do micro management and over supervision. The Senior Managers have to develop a breed of leaders among their subordinates through an articulative succession planning also. To create a truly agile enterprise, C-suite must embrace agile principles. The Senior Managers have to move from Commanding to Coaching. Creation of a positive Organization can help a great deal in this regard. In their 2016 article Embracing Agile  in Harvard Business Review  K. Rigby, Jeff Sutherland, and  Hirotaka Takeuchi analysed in detail that Agile has to be learnt . There are favorable and unfavorable conditions to be contemplated before putting Agile Management into action. Boredom takes the mystery out of what executives do every day so the work routine should be no or less monotonous. The Agile Managers have to adopt more Leadership role than of administrator or supervisor , focused on Lean management ( which is a method of managing and organising work with the aim of improving a company’s performance, particularly the quality and profitability of its production processes. It aims at reducing non-value-added activities , poor-quality , high costs and complications.It has the aim of optimal use of resources with minimum wastage. It has six methods like The 5S method (sort, set in order, shine, standardise and sustain) to improve the working environment and reduce wasted time , The Six Sigma method to improve process quality and efficiency , Visual management to share information and solve problems , The Kaizen method to continuously improve processes , The SMED method to reduce changeover time , The Kanban method to optimize inventory management The Value-Stream Mapping (VSM) method to analyze processes and identify obstacles. Behind the Systems and procedures of Agile Organization and Techniques and styles of Agile Management , there is a basic concept of mindset change whose roots are in a concept called Agile Thinking about which several researchers have written about the roots of Agile thinking (Abbas et al. 2008; Prange and Heracleous 2018b;Rigby et al. 2016b; Whiteley et al. 2019) and have shown that the thinking behind the concept can be traced back several decades. Prange and Heracleous (2018b, p. 2) argue that Agile thinking has roots in several academic fields such as sociology, education and manufacturing. Agile was popularized around the turn of the millennium, largely as a result of the publication of the “The Agile Manifesto” (www.agilemanifesto.org) (Beck et al. 2001). The related term “VUCA World” (Bennett and Lemoine 2014a, 2014b) refers to this new turbulent and dynamic business environment (VUCA=volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity). “strategic agility” (Doz and Kosonen 2008; Doz and Kosonen 2010; Kotter 2014; Lewis et al. 2014), which refers tothe ability to quickly change and adapt strategies and business models to changing market conditions and competitors. n the words of Kieser (1997), the new management concept must hit the “nerve of today’s managers”.It connects us with Agile mindset which is is about creative thinking and responding to change in uncertain and turbulent environments. It’s about thinking through how you can understand what’s going on in the environment, identify what uncertainty you’re facing and figure out how to adapt as you go along .The world is changing rapidly to become VUCA world . Customers and market dynamics are changing , Global environment is changing , Consumer behavior and preferences are changing. so there is  this Copernican Revolution in management which is a paradigm shift from the 20th Century view that customers revolve around the stationary “center of the universe”—the value chain of the organization—to the view that the organization is one of many organizations . revolving around the customer. The organization survives and thrives only so long as it is agile enough to meet the customer’s shifting needs and desires . Creative leadership and Management has emerged with innovative ways of management.Today’s Managers have to be more competent ,more flexible,more proactive,more decisive,more innovative,more empowering to manage in the world of VUCA.

 

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