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Adaptable Work Teams: Characteristics & Importance

Adaptable Work Teams: Characteristics & Importance
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  • 0:04 Adaptation
  • 0:44 Why Adaptability Is Important
  • 1:43 Adaptable Work Teams
  • 3:16 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

Adaptable work teams find new ways of doing things when situations change or challenges are encountered. In this lesson, you'll learn more about the importance of adaptability and traits of these types of teams.

Adaptation

The team at Zippy Events has its largest event of the year coming up in seven days. They've been working to put together a lavish, over-the-top wedding ceremony and reception for the daughter of a famous actor.

Two days before the event, the team leader drops a bombshell on the team: the bride has decided to change the venue for the reception. All of the chairs, tables, and decorations that were ordered specially for the initial venue may very well not fit. And, that's not all: the bride is requesting numerous changes to the elaborate menu.

What's the Zippy team to do? Throw up its hands and lose the business, damaging its reputation in the process? Or would the team adapt to the situation and make the best of it?

Why Adaptability Is Important

Adaptability in the workplace simply refers to employees' ability to remain flexible and embrace change when conditions shift. In the example we just looked at, the team at Zippy Events has two options: remain rigid in its planning or adapt to the changes their client has presented to them. Adaptability in work teams means that the team as a collective unit can work through those changes and challenges together to emerge successfully on the other side.

An adaptable work team is significant for a business for a number of reasons. First, it helps teams work faster because there is less resistance to change. Adaptable teams spend more time working on solutions rather than trying to understand the challenge or problem that they're facing. Because of this, productivity will increase. Adaptable teams move full speed ahead as plans change and, second, it lends itself to greater creativity because team members are focused on coming up with new ideas.

So, what do adaptable work teams look like? What type of characteristics do they have? Let's examine a few.

Adaptable Work Teams

If you're trying to come up with a formula to build an adaptable work team, collect a few of these key ingredients:

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