I recently read the book, Focused, Fast, and Flexible: Creating Agility Advantage in a VUCA World by Horney and O’Shea, and while they related the AGILE model to organizations, I thought it would also fit for superachievers. To implement strategies for more adeptly handling both positive and negative changes in the work environment; we must first be aware of our current level of agility. So, let’s dive into strategies for you to be more AGILE in the work environment (or any environment, really).
To do this, we are going to apply the AGILE model created for organizations by Horney and O’Shea to you as an individual. The AGILE model stands for:
Anticipate Change: This means paying systematic attention to potential changes coming your way not just at the individual level, but also in your field of expertise (both internal and external). In this step, you think about the future with imagination and wisdom, develop an early alert system for anticipating changes coming (like setting Google Alerts for your industry), and then monitor the system, being ready to survive and even thrive with the change.
Generate Confidence: This is your ability to inspire others to trust you to be competent, accountable, authentic, and a good communicator. This means that you are connecting, aligning, and engaging with others to further develop their confidence in you. The more confidence people have in you to show up and do what needs to get done, the more you will succeed in a fast-paced environment.
Initiate Action: This is your inclination toward proactive action – a sense of urgency and active collaboration. Superachievers are doers – so no problem here, right? This is also the ability to be comfortable in ambiguous situations, which will help you succeed in a fast-paced environment every time.
Liberate Thinking: This is your inclination towards innovation – originating and incorporating innovative ideas. According to Horney and O’Shea, this means that you engage in FIT – fresh, innovative thinking. You are open and looking for innovative ideas about what is being done, what should be done next, and how to do it better and faster (even when things are working great.)
Evaluate Results: This is your ability to align vision to action. You acquire knowledge and facts necessary to improve the actions you have taken in the past, seek feedback, and engage in after-action reviews.
As part of the AGILE model, Horney and O’Shea (2015) included an agility personality profile. Consider how you would rate yourself in the following areas:
Focus: Your ability to create goals and concentrate upon them until completion. You can stay on track even when it is difficult to do so. You also become fully engaged in tasks.
Confidence: You approach work with a sense of self-assuredness. You have a high degree of trust in your own abilities and you are eager to face challenges.
Proactivity: You avoid a reactive mindset. You anticipate tasks and continually look for ways to make progress. You also accept the need to act without complete information.
Optimism: In this area, you look for positive aspects of demanding situations. You can bounce back after failing to achieve. You find hidden opportunities within problems or challenges and you like team collaboration.
Inquisitiveness: You value the opportunity to learn. You are comfortable in new situations. You seek and benefit from experiences that demand the acquisition of new knowledge or skill.
There you have it superachievers – take some time to reflect on your personal agility today!