VUCA is an acronym used to describe or reflect on the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity of general conditions and situations. The term VUCA was adopted by strategic business leaders to describe the chaotic, turbulent and rapidly changing business environments that have become the “new normal.”
This article elaborates on the point that leadership agility and adaptability are now required skills if organizations are to succeed in this VUCA world. To combat or work within this VUCA world, leaders must be able to address each of these issues. Bob Johansen, a fellow at the Institute for the Future, suggests that leaders must counteract these with their mirror opposites.
Volatility to be counteracted with Vision.
Uncertainty to be counteracted with Understanding.
Complexity to be counteracted with Clarity.
Ambiguity to be counteracted with Agility.
In the report entitled, "Leading Now: Critical Capabilities for a Complex World", from the Harvard Business School, the author describes eight critical capabilities leaders must possess to be effective today.
This author concludes that, "as the business world continues to change, the key traits necessary for leaders to be successful may also change. In a volatile environment, the ability to react to new scenarios is imperative."
For more ideas and considerations on how to develop leaders in a VUCA environment, click here.
Ray Carvey, executive vice president of corporate learning at Harvard Business Publishing, a subsidiary of the Harvard Business School, says management structures today are very different than 20 years ago, namely because of the middle manager. Carvey describes today's business world as "volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous," and says it's crucial to stay productive through this time of change. According to Harvard Business Publishing's report, "Leading Now: Critical Capabilities for a Complex World," there are eight critical capabilities leaders must possess to be effective today.