We are now one month into the new chapter of 2021.  2020, the last chapter we all experienced earned numerous graphic descriptors – chaotic, disheartening, devastating, demoralizing, demeaning and even disgraceful at times.  Take your pick and maybe add your own description to fit your experience.  Let’s bury the pain but take away the important learnings and insights.  

Our research into the field of organizational and leadership agility the past 20 years included a number of years exploring the defining characteristics of the AGILE PERSONALITY PROFILE (APP) led by our colleague for many years, Dr. Ben Baran.  The APP is a unique personality assessment specifically developed to assess the underlying characteristics associated with agility in individuals.  

Turns out there are five relatively stable traits that support behavioral agility which include the capacity to focus, proactivity, confidence, optimism and inquisitiveness.  As we explore the dynamics of the COVID realities and implications for our teams and the workplace, it is worth taking a fresh look at our teams and leaders to examine how well we align with these research-based attributes? Those team members with high doses of these attributes may very well adapt and thrive in these faster paced, turbulent times.  Those team members with low doses of these attributes may struggle significantly more and require additional coaching and support.

It is abundantly clear that success in 2021 depends greatly on our ability to generate confidence in our teams and foster a positive, active collaboration across every enterprise.  There is no place where this is more crucial and desperately needed than in our government at national and local levels if we are to restore our identity, form and function.

Just take a moment to think about this … just imagine that we can … 

·      Get FOCUSED on the real WHY of America, 

·      Become PROACTIVE at addressing the things that really matter

·      Regain our individual and corporate sense of CONFIDENCE

·      Build a real sense of OPTIMISM individually and in each other

·      Become INQUISITIVE about the future and how to solve for the real issues 

TAO, is an ancient Chinese philosophy that refers to the absolute principle underlying the universe, combining within itself the principles of yin and yang and signifying the way, or code of behavior, that is in harmony with the natural order.  Pretty deep stuff … but really pretty simple also.

I have spent the past twenty years working with organizations and leaders around the world in an effort to help them become more Focused, Fast & Flexible (aka agile).  One of the lessons that I have learned and continually preach is that if you want AGILE COLLABORATION … you must first start with an ETHIC OF COOPERATION.  

What that means, simply, is that if you don’t enter a situation, opportunity or problem with a mindset and willingness to cooperate, then the door to authentic collaboration is already mostly closed.   This is at the heart of why many organizations stuck in hard silos fail to collaborate naturally or easily.  Obviously, this plays a major role in our political quagmires.

The Agility Personality Profile and our Agility Audit that examines the nature of organizational agility and collaboration practices are just a couple of the tools and methods we use to help our clients face the uncertain future and build their Agility Advantage.  

Love to explore your story and challenges too.

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Tom O'Shea, CMC

Volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) - these are the times we live in and exactly why Tom O’Shea is considered a trusted advisor helping leaders, teams and organizations adapt and thrive to navigate VUCA and deliver future success.

Tom brings a unique blend of strategic, operational and organizational expertise that is rare and valuable.  With perceptive insight, proven strategies and impactful coaching skills, he helps clients at the enterprise, team and individual leader levels exceed even their own expectations.

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