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Corporate Turbulence and VUCA Business World

Corporate Turbulence in a VUCA Business World

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Corporate Turbulence in a VUCA Business World

The environment can be stable, that is, one in which there is little unpredictable change. Another type of environment is referred to as changing. A turbulent environment exists when changes are unexpected and unpredictable.

Environmental complexity was defined as characterizing the number of environmental variables and their interdependence.

Low organizational complexity indicates that only a few variables describe the environment while high complexity indicates that the environment has many important variables to consider. (Krishna Teja 2016)

A turbulent environment exists when changes are unexpected and unpredictable. The key environmental issues concern the nature of the pressure for change and the speed at which the organization must be able to respond an act. The level of environmental turbulence appears to influence structure.

Ansoff (1979) also developed the measurement of the environmental turbulence into five levels: repetitive, expanding, changing, discontinuous, and surprising levels (Dan Kipley, Roxanne Helm-Stevens, Mitchell Lookinbee-Kipley)

Turbulence in diving

In scuba diving, this can happen when changes, Indicative, occur

  • Environment: Such as current, wave, visibility, thermal bed
  • Equipment: Such as mask failure, pressure / breathing regulator, latency regulator failure, gas leak
  • The diver him/herself: Such as workload, stress, abrupt change of depth, hypercapnia, sedation, disease

The above can happen individually or in combination, and their effective treatment lies in

  • Good education
  • Taking care of the physical and mental condition
  • The time spent practicing in scenarios
  • The performance ability of the diving buddy or team

Turbulence in business and management

Examples of this “turbulence” (Warnecke and Becker, 1994) are the rapid development in information and communication technologies, satisfied markets, a high competition that leads to more customer orientation as well as the political changes in East Europe, where markets break down in few months. (Kranjska gora, 1997)

As environmental turbulence increases, strategic issues that challenge the way an organisation plans and implements its strategy emerge with greater frequency. Hence the tracking, monitoring and management of priority strategic issues becomes an imperative.

Two basic factors that influence uncertainty are the number of factors that affect the organization and the extent to which those factors change. Strategies to adapt to these changes in the environment include boundary-spanning roles, interorganizational partnerships, and mergers and joint ventures. (read more)

Turbulence and VUCA

Bob Johansen, of the Institute for the Future, adapted VUCA for the business world in his 2009 book, Leaders Make the Future. He used it to reflect the turbulent and unpredictable forces of change that could affect organizations, and he argued that you need new

  • skills
  • approaches and
  • behaviors

to manage in the face of the four VUCA threats.

VUCA represents a set of challenges that

  • individuals
  • teams
  • managers and
  • organizations

in affected industries all have to face.

Individually, these challenges can be significant, but they can be formidable when they’re combined.

Are you an executive, manager or project team member?

Do you want to learn how to deal with turbulence in a VUCA business world?

VUCASIM Dive is an imaginative, fun, and safe way.

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