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We live in a dynamic era, where the only constant is 'change'. This alone poses significant challenges for corporations to remain relevant in an increasingly social and digital context. Regularly aligning products and services with market demand is not an easy thing to do, but when achieved, produces significant results.

But can big corporates truly be agile? Or is there rigid structure standing in the way of adopting new trends and best practices? Many leaders of big companies assume that their organizations are too big and too inflexible to be agile, but is this the case? To be able to answer these questions, let’s examine the traits that successful companies have in common that help them gain an edge over their competitors:

Team-Oriented Approach

An agile approach doesn’t mean dissolving your existing corporate structure, but instead carefully empowering employees to become more involved in day-to-day processes. Forming smaller project teams with clear hierarchy and team leaders who are readily available to help and guide workers, ensures projects are completed on time and within budget. It’s all about eliminating communication barriers to be able to stimulate your employees to unlock their full potential. Another immediate benefit to a team-based approach is the fact that decisions can be made and implemented quickly across multiple sectors.

Flexible Deployment of Strategies

Many organizations face challenges in adopting agile practices because they seem to conflict with [change] management paradigms. When we look at big corporates that are known for their agility, we immediately notice the non-traditional roles of managers and the fact that employees are given far more autonomy compared to mid-sized businesses. The glue that holds these two seemingly conflicting elements together is strong leadership. This authority is translated to a more casual working environment where workers are encouraged and offered a network of support, rather than assigned tasks at random and pressured for results.

In looking how big corporates adopt an agile approach to dealing with their internal structure and human capital two things stand out from the rest: goal definition and management guidance. There is an ongoing dialogue between employees at different levels of the corporate ladder that’s actively encouraged, which creates an environment of productivity, acceptance and problem-solving.

Change-Defined Business Ecosystems

Agile businesses don’t accept change as a passive component of the modern market; they actively seek and embrace it to target internal channels for improvement. In the context of actively fluctuating trends and consumer sentiment paradigms, it’s becoming apparent that some companies adopt an approach where they either wait it out or passively comply with the pervading trends while other big corporates manage to ride out the trends by scanning the market for opportunities and threats. In doing so, they’re able to stay agile without labeling change as positive or negative in connection with their existing strategies and instead redefine the latter to reflect better consumer needs and expectations. 

The advantages of Agile for big corporations are multiple, and the company itself becomes better adjusted to the social construct of today’s market with a management structure that enable insight and ideas among its most valuable capital – the employees. Most of your workers are end users as well, and their sentiment is linked directly to how well a product or service is going to perform. It is a measurement of dexterity for the big corporates whether they can listen to and adopt the invaluable feedback of readily available users and utilize it to their benefit.

 

Written by Ross Fastuca @Locomote

 

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