The term "VUCA" was first used from military lingo in 1985 by United States Army War College, and it described conditions, arising from Cold War. VUCA is an acronym of four different words:
- V from Volatility,
- U from Uncertainty
- C from Complexity
- A from Ambiguity
Term VUCA is used as the definition in strategic leadership, more accurate, for emerging ideas (Nandram S.S., Bindlish K.P., 2017, page 3).
Volatility in VUCA describes company quality of functioning in rapid and significant changes. Volatile market changes quickly, prices of goods and services may rise or fall in a short period, and trends also may be different and reverse suddenly. Experiences in our company and market environments, like rate and speed of changes demand our accelerated responses and decision-making movements. These changes will keep accelerating over time. "The key to managing volatility is clarity of vision" (Praveen KS, 2018, page 17, 18).
The situation, where nothing is certain. Outcomes are unpredictable. Nothing in this world, in the market, in businesses, in collaborations is for sure. These times are very difficult to be clear of the present. Leaders of companies and businesses are forced to possess many different viewpoints to keep its position and gain completely new spot patterns, new insights, etc.. "The only certainty is uncertainty" (Praveen KS, 2018, page 18).
Leaders, owners and companies management must consider a plethora of interconnected factors resulting from market and economy in decision-making processes. They have to give up the pursuit of perfection and focus and seek new collaborations, mediate on complexities and seize the bargains. "Making sense of the chaos is a fundamental skill" (Praveen KS, 2018, page 18).
Ambiguity manifests a lack of clarity and difficulty to make clear how the situation is and defines impact and meanings of occurring events. This is the effect of "complex, ever-changing environments". In our rapidly growing and quickly changing world, no one will ever have enough information to instruct our decisions in businesses. "Our ability to manage risk and develop resilient behaviors in the face of ambiguity is crucial. (Praveen KS, 2018, page 19).
Succesfull leaders behaviors in VUCA World
We can mention a few actions that are very related to VUCA world, and are most accurate to follow with (Praveen KS, 2018, page 20):
- Trust your coworkers, people that work with you about their judgment and specialist expertise,
- You will never feel comfortable in never-stopped market, so get used to it,
- Be innovative, curious, search for information, keep your clear vision, stay focused and updated,
- Appreciate new, short-term answers.
- Bakshi V., (2017), The Forward-Looking Manager in a VUCA World, SAGE Publications, India
- Mack O., Khare A., Krämer A., Burgartz T., (2016), Managing in a VUCA World, Springer International Publishing, Switzerland
- Nandram S.S., Bindlish K. P., (2017), Managing VUCA Through Integrative Self-Management, Springer International Publishing, Switzerland
- Praveen KS, (2018), HR in VUCA World - a Viewpoint & Insight, Notion Press, India
- Rob van Tulder, Verbeke A., Jankowska B., (2019), International Business in a VUCA World - The Changing Role of States and Firms, Emerald Publishing Limited, United Kingdoms
Author: Mateusz Paduch