Natalie Fratto, a successful venture capital investor, gave a talk about the importance of adaptability. Fratto met with almost 300 different technology startups looking for funding last year, but in order to determine which company to invest in, Fratto asks herself one important question: how well do they react to the inevitability of change. She considers adaptability a form of intelligence she coins "AQ" and one that should be at the forefront of all businesses.
AQ can be tested, measured and improved and Natalie Fratto explains three ways to measure your adaptability. First, she asks "What if?" instead of "Tell me about a time" in order to gauge how many distinct scenarios a candidate can conjure. By practicing simulations, you can begin to understand a person's ability to adapt to change. Second, she looks for signs of "unlearning" which is the act of seeking to challenge what you assume to already know as fact. Third, she looks for people "who infuse exploration into their life and their business." She says in business, many people "exploit" rather than "explore," and exploiting a business model can leave you blind to a new opportunity, whereas exploring removes roadblocks.
Natalie concludes by urging us to improve our adaptability in order to be successful in our ever-evolving landscaped. She cautions against being discouraged by difficulties and compares adaptability to a muscle that must be flexed.