Adaptation

Fast Company Magazine recently published a feature article by Robert Safian called “The Secrets of Generation Flux,” in its February 2012 issue.

http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/162/generation-flux-future-of-business
 
The basic assertions of this 12+ page article, from this excellent magazine, appear to be that the business climate has changed permanently, is now hopelessly unpredictable and chaotic and that there is now no formula for success. Business professionals only hope, according to the article, is to keep an open mind, hone a variety of skills and be ready to adapt.

The magazine has a sublime look and interesting material. The article is well-written and features a half-dozen or so very interesting business success stories. However, does it really take more than 12 pages to convey the idea that the business landscape is now more unstable than ever and that it’s impossible to gauge accurately?

Even if it did take that much effort to get such a simple point across, the real issue is that the overall theme of the article is nonsense. This concept that business professionals are now buoys set adrift at the mercy of chaotic circumstances is bunk.

The assertion that the business climate can no longer be predicted is an over-dramatization. Until there are a flood of articles that stock analysts are all losing their money, because their ability to predict business trends has suddenly vanished, this certainly seems like a moot issue.

The idea is also presented that there is no longer a business model that guarantees success. Uh, yeah. So what happens when a company run by good leaders, hires great people and sets up a wonderful work environment, taking a strong concept to create the perfect product in an area where demand is higher than the supply? Hmm. How do you say, “success?”

The formula is the same is the same as it’s always been; great people, wonderful ideas, intelligent and creative marketing, hard work and dedication.

Sure today’s market puts a premium on adaptability, decisiveness and risk-taking, but haven’t those always been attributes? The only novel thing is that those strengths have become even more necessary and beneficial.

So as a memo to Fast Company Magazine, keep up the good work. Your article was interesting, but instead of presenting the current market as a gigantic mystery and spending 12+ pages illuminating nothing but the question marks, why not focus on the strengths and formulas that have worked in business almost since the dawn of man?

You say that this is “the new economy” and that those with the right stuff to succeed are “generation flux,” well let’s state plainly the tools Gen F. needs to succeed.

It’s the same recipe of core strengths and abilities that have always bred success, but with the advent of computers and the internet things move much faster, so combine that with a higher portion of urgency, decisiveness, adaptability, re-invention, risk-taking, self-improvement, courage, resiliency and a broadening of skills, knowledge and vision.

Now, you can be a modern Moses. Split the waters of chaos and walk on through.

The article finishes magnificently with Darwin’s great quote, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives; nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”

But according to Darwin, this has always been true.

Now, in a business context, it is even more-so.

Comments sent

3 comment(s).
Mónica Cossio - 12/11/2013 11:20:31 PM
In my opinion adaptation is a very valuable strengths. We must adapt to survive and in our times you need to do it fast. Even though, this is going to help you to increase your probability of success , there are no recipes for it or happiness. It is a matter of courage , perseverance, tenacity and attitude. Some people use the term emotional intelligence. Even if you are scared, you must challenge yourself and try to look for new things and look the positive side of things.

“The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.” Albert Einstein
Hannna Soto - 12/7/2013 12:51:40 PM
The world goes to daily changes, as it habitants evolutes. it is true that Computers are a great source of information for the world, also easy things for us, as for as communications, at the same time i ask my self: what was wrong about the way things were before?, when communications were more personal, we have better relationships, took more time to do things, the depersonalization of the species that uses technology, social networks, and other inventions, obviously involve negative things, as results the humans has become more sedentaries, cold in their interaction with others, and has losses many values teached by past generations. It is my personal opinion that been capable to ADAPT is a very good ability to have in order to survive in this days, not only from business point of view, but in general in live; who doesn't adapt have way less chance to make it! Darwin’s great quote, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives; nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” Totally resonates with me.
Evelyn Vaglio - 11/28/2013 6:25:34 PM
To be adaptable is to have open mind, creativity, flexibility and tolerance with others and their ideas. Also, adaptation comes when you have the courage to confront yourself and when you have disposition to see you in your total identity: with your strength and weakness and you can accept them. So, for me be adaptable is a combination of being tolerant with others and principally with yourself, because life always is in a continuous change and it affects everything a everybody.

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