Even though it’s no secret that small to medium-sized businesses often have vastly fewer resources in comparison to larger enterprises, prioritizing organizational agility is just as critical for their survival. In today’s world, where various unpleasant surprises can arise at any time, you must be well prepared to avoid becoming overwhelmed. Recent events, such as the pandemic, supply chain issues, war, inflation, and The Great Resignation, are clear indicators of why your SMB needs to be agile.
When the needs of your customers, employees, the market, the economy, and other factors change, agile businesses can adapt quickly and keep working toward their business goals. To be agile, you must have systems that allow you to respond quickly to rapidly changing conditions and opportunities by preparing your people, processes, and technologies.
However, agility doesn’t happen overnight, and you will encounter setbacks that can make your agility journey bumpy. Knowing that is the first step towards business agility.
Keep An Eye Out For These 5 Bumps Along the Way
On your journey to organizational agility, watch out for these five roadblocks:
In the context of agility, this refers to a business unit’s unwillingness to adopt innovations due to risk-averse mindsets or the perceived risk of innovations gobbling up existing business.
Whenever a business unit’s goals and priorities are misaligned, it’s probably due to workplace politics. It can lead to the dispersal of innovation efforts and the establishment of competing innovation units within the same enterprise, stretching resources and diluting the impact.
It could also take the form of a refusal to restructure the innovation portfolio to focus on a few mission-critical priorities, preferring instead to keep “pet projects” going for long periods of time.
Information silos prevent business units from sharing information. Information silos prevent business units from sharing information. The entire company suffers when information – or any other valuable asset, such as core talent – is hoarded and kept hidden from others. Information silos, in conjunction with workplace politics, could explain why some innovations, while successful within the unit, fail to scale in the principal business.
Lack of Strategic Fit
Innovation units can become disconnected from the central business and lose sight of the company’s vision and mission over time. When this happens – which is especially likely when innovation units are in a different city or country than the management team – the innovation team may start to define its purpose in ways incompatible with the main business.
Lack of Buy-In
Failure is a foregone conclusion if the main business’s leadership team does not buy-in or participate. This lack of participation could be because the leadership members have never been sufficiently engaged or because their attention has been spread too thin across many initiatives.
Partner for Success
Constantly checking for the roadblocks mentioned above may be more than most SMBs can handle since it requires significant effort, time, and skill. However, by partnering with an expert MSP like us, you can focus on your business while we make your journey towards organizational agility as smooth as possible.
Feel free to contact us for a no-obligation consultation.