Omicron Variant and the “Adaptability” Booster
An Imaginary Interview about the VUCA Virus and the Adaptability Booster with Dr. A “Dap” Tability
Any doubt that our future will be anything less than VUCA – (Volatile-Uncertain-Complex-Ambiguous) – vaporized with the stunning introduction of Omicron, our newest COVID19 variant, into our lives. That recent news shattered our hope to get “back to normal” and once again focused the center stage spotlights on the hero of our future: adaptability. It confirmed why adaptability is being touted as the #1 foundational skill humans need for future employability, career success, job satisfaction, and mental well-being.
So while listening to the very familiar voice of Dr. Anthony Fauci this weekend prepare us on what to expect from this next round of COVID19, I couldn’t help but draw the parallels between protecting us from another viral outbreak and improving our ability to respond positively and calmly to change.
Below is my imaginary interview with Dr. A. “Dap” Tability, adapted from Dr. Fauci’s interview on the Weekend Today Show with Kristen Welker and Peter Alexander.
What makes the future so different and concerning?
Dr. A. “Dap” Tability: The VUCA virus has such a large number of mutations which makes change so transmissible and unpredictable. It also has a bunch of mutations that suggest it could evade more traditional approaches to leading, managing, and responding to change. These are all maybes but the suggestions seem to be enough to say that unpredictability will spread and disrupt rapidly. This is something that we need to pay really close attention to and be prepared for something serious.
There’s a lot we still don’t know about the future. What are the key questions you want to be answered and when will you have those answers?
Dr. A. “Dap” Tability: There are a couple of questions. Is the next cycle of disruptive events we experience more serious than previous events? We don’t want to limit the conversation to the pandemic alone because disruptions, caused by the likes of supply chain problems, weather related events, terrorism, shootings, and politics to name a few, will become more frequent and intense. We need to ask if our current levels of adaptive skills will be enough to respond in ways that move us from enduring the challenge to thriving beyond it. If we don’t have these abilities, how should we prepare?
Do you believe another disruptive event is here already or just around the corner?
Dr. A. “Dap” Tability: I wouldn’t be surprised if it is. We haven’t detected it yet but when we’re having so much complexity and ambiguity in our lives, it almost invariably is going to hit us and do so when we least expect it. VUCA-like change just happens. We can’t hit pause, stop or rewind. We can only become more nimble, agile, and adaptable.
What do we know is happening? Are we at the mercy of change?
Dr. A. “Dap” Tability: Our fate is in our own hands. And yet again, what we know and see now is that people who have low AQ are most vulnerable and susceptible to the ravages of VUCA (Volatile-Uncertain-Complex-Ambiguous). It is essential that people with low AQ get an Adaptability “booster” to improve their grit, resilience, mental flexibility, mindset, and unlearn abilities; and that organizations provide a safe environment that supports and encourages adaptability and well-being. So if there was ever a reason to get prepared for the next event or round of VUCA, it’s now because adaptability competence dramatically increases your protection, employability, career satisfaction, and personal wellbeing.
Your Adaptability Booster is waiting.
Experience your future through an adaptability lens. Schedule your and/or your team’s inoculation against the VUCA virus today.