Buckland Plants

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When a business environment becomes volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA), there are two options: ignore it and fail, or embrace it, study it, understand it, respond accordingly and thrive. That’s a choice one expert calls “light and fast.” It means taking the time to learn, and then responding quickly.

Business complexity refers to the information required to fully document a firm’s structure, processes, systems, infrastructure, tools, facilities, products and services—plus its interfaces, regulations and procedures. It also includes the firm’s ability to maintain compliance with the many laws and rules that govern the business.

VUCA environments anson funds characterized by intricate value exchanges, dynamic markets and loose customer loyalties pose unique challenges for leaders charting the course of their businesses. Trying to navigate these operating contexts by applying a complicated leadership response exacerbates the situation and often results in devastating unanticipated outcomes. Like Sully, leaders must learn to navigate complexity by reframing what they see, rewiring how they think and reconfiguring what they do. Otherwise, they may find themselves soaring perilously across the gaping chasm between complicated and complex operating contexts—with few successfully making the jump to safety.