Progress Over AI Pace: Agility’s Guiding Hand
We live in an age of rapid change (and we know it already). New technologies emerge overnight, consumer preferences shift on a dime, and crises and disruptions continually rock markets.( already aware of this)
Organisations must become more flexible, avoiding corporate business buzzwords, to thrive in these tumultuous times. Flexibility’s core principles — experimentation, adaptation, cross-functional collaboration — have been around for years.
Within software development teams, a movement emerged around 2011 focused on rapid iterative approaches. The core ideas involved releasing software in quick cycles, gathering user feedback, and continually improving based on that input.
Over the last few years, industries beyond tech have realised the broader applicability of those flexible and experimental principles for driving a more incredible speed and adaptability across their organisations. Marketing, sales, executive leadership and more began adopting rapid development and implementation approaches. Tailored to their contexts.
And industries far beyond tech have realised the need for agility.
The COVID-19 pandemic put agility to the ultimate test. Supply chains broke, demand spiked, then crashed, and digital needs exploded almost overnight. The most flexible and adaptable organisations kept pace.
They didn’t wholly transform themselves or overhaul their cultures. They used agility where it mattered most, adopting key aspects without getting mired in an arduous company-wide transition. Cross-functional rapidly created or refined products to meet surging customer demand.
Clear and primarily evident executive support enabled quick decisions around priorities. The results speak for themselves.
· Adidas saw e-commerce sales double from March to April 2020.
· Companies like JD com facilitated massive growth on flexible cloud platforms.
· Consumer goods groups like L’Oreal and Unilever fast-tracked the development of pandemic-critical offerings.
None of these organisations completely restructured themselves overnight. But with targeted agility injections, they succeeded through disruption, not disruption.
The same nimble adjustments can drive organisational resilience and responsiveness in any industry.
Some key steps:
Assemble Cross-Functional Teams
Expertise from across departments collaborates towards concrete goals.
Empower teams to move fast while keeping senior leaders looped in on priorities and blockers.
Set Up Rapid Feedback Loops
Implement mechanisms to quickly gather input, test ideas, and improve products, services and initiatives.
Start Small, Then Scale
Pilot changes instead of pushing complex, organisation-wide transformations. Agility is all about flexibility, not following rigid doctrines.
The key is not blindly chasing agility but purposefully building responsiveness across crucial areas.
With the right approach, your organisation can respond to this age of acceleration with the nimble adjustments that drive success.
Why Agility Matters More Now With AI?
A. AI systems are developing incredibly quickly. They have the power to change and improve many parts of business. But to really make the most out of AI, companies need to stay nimble as they use it.
B. Using agility means welcoming change instead of fighting it. It means bringing together teams with different skills to test AI tools. Seeing if they really create value for real customers. It means making frequent little tweaks, not just one big launch.
C. Leaders don’t let AI run the show. They shape it to help humans thrive.
That’s why agility rises in importance with AI. Agility keeps the focus on people’s real problems as tech progresses, respecting the human-centric approach. It means adapting AI for good — ethically and morally — through common sense.