Professionalism as a cure for VUCA

I can live with volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. What I have trouble with is clarity.

VUCA is a new-ish buzz word. It means Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity. learning how to cope with VUCA helps you - cope and therefore be more successful.

I don't think I have a problem with VUCA. What I have a problem with is clarity.  I am ok with the struggles inherent in trying accomplish something. I expect things to change and be uncertain and to be more complex then original thought. I plan for that to happen.
What frustrates me to no end, to the point I'll lose my cool - is lack of clarity.  If there is not a clear understanding of what we are trying to accomplish and how we have decided to accomplish it - then getting through the difficulties - is impossible.

Without clarity - I have no clue on how to proceed to overcome the obstacles because I have no basis on which to judge - what a good solution to the problem is. I can live with volatility and uncertainty. I can't fix what is wrong though, without clarity.

I had a moment of clarity the other day. I have been working with an individual who is absolutely crappy about providing clarity. Most of the time I have no idea what they want me to do, how they want me to do it, when they want me to do it by or what resources I might be given to do the work that was vaguely suggested needs to be done. 

To me - this lack of clarity feels like lack of professionalism. If you ask me to participate in a meeting, but won't tell me when the meeting is, where it is, what the meeting is about, why we are having the meeting and what you hope comes out of the meeting, then, I can't participate in the meeting. This is basic stuff.

Which is why I have been thinking about the need for clarity as it relates to VUCA. We can't control everything, but we can at least provide clarity on what we want to have happen. To me, this is what it means to be a professional.

A professional works to make sure everyone is at least clear on what the objectives are, what the plan is, when we plan to do whatever it is and what resources we are going to use and who is responsible for what.

If I have a professional relationship with someone – the thing that gets us through the difficulties caused by volatility and ambiguity and what gives us the confidence to work together through the complexity – is having clarity on what it is we are trying to accomplish. Who is responsible for what etc.

To me – clarity is what helps makes getting through VUCA doable. It’s what reduces my stress. 

When I strive to be professional - this is what I am trying to do. Whether I think of other people as professional or not - has to do entirely with how well they create clarity and therefore confidence in myself and others.

I'm curious whether anyone else feels the same way I do about what it means to be a professional.

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