Agility. If your industry is IT, for sure you deal with it every day.

Did you know that Agility is one of the 36 traits you want to possess if you are a success-driven entrepreneur? If you want to be an effective leader? If you hope to make the best decisions possible in the heat of the moment! It is often the difference between success and failure.

What does Agility look like? How do you get it and in what ways should you apply it in your business now?

Agile leaders incorporate the sum of their experiences into today’s challenges and integrate that learning to find new solutions. When you are agile, you are in a constantly evolving state. says, “Agility is the ability to be graceful and quick. Examples: on the court, in the courtroom, using gaming devices; both mental and physical skills in speed and grace; mental agility allows following two conversations at once.”

Merriam-Webster describes it as “nimbleness; dexterity“. Watch any show dog as it navigates a course and you will see inspired agility in action!

How Nimble Are You?

Finally, Wikipedia defines Business Agility as, “The ability to rapidly respond to change by adapting its initial stable configuration; business agility can be maintained by adapting goods and services to meet customer demands, adjusting to the changes in the business environment and taking advantage of human resources.”

If it is so important, do you have it?

Here is a way to rate yourself to learn how agility shows up in you. On a scale of 1-10, 1 is least agile, 10 is most.

  • I adapt to market changes in productive and cost-efficient ways ___
  • I stay up on, and in tune with, trends ___
  • I am self-organized ___
  • I’m able to mobilize people and resources ___
  • I handle transition well ___
  • I challenge the status quo ___
  • I seek to discover new ways of doing things ___
  • I remain calm and present ___
  • I take time to reflect on my experiences ___
  • I routinely seek feedback and process information received ___

    Ever Feel This Way??? Give time to the process to eliminate pressure-based decisions. Operate in totality, looking at impact on all operations.

  • I am not afraid to seek risk deliberately ___
  • I possess a pioneering attitude with an open mind to opportunities ___
  • I am a life-long learner ___
  • I believe in collaboration that leads to innovation ___
    • Practice all steps of creative problem-solving ___
    • Give time to the process to eliminate pressure-based decisions ___
    • Give time to the process to eliminate pressure-based decisions ___

Running a small business can be chaotic, full of crises, always on the verge – the verge of exploding or imploding.

Operating at the edge of chaos means maintaining the tension between change and constraint. High learning agile individuals learn the “right lessons” and apply them to future and novel situations.


  1. Am I applying agility to my business now?
  2. Do I test for it; hire for it – it is a reliable indicator of future leadership potential.
  3. Am I asking questions that uncover previous experience – it plays a role in present day decision making.
  4. Do I analyze myself – are you quick or slow to change and adapt?
  5. Am I defensive or graceful – do you accept responsibility or defer it?
  6. Have I progressed in skill from 1) technical, to 2) interpersonal, to 3) conceptual?
  7. Am I able to execute on a wide range of leadership roles and exhibit different performance as required for the role?
  8. How well do I manage multiple opposing categories simultaneously:
    1. Transactional vs Transformational
    2. Autocratic vs Consultative
    3. Task-oriented vs Relationship-oriented
    4. Directive vs Participative?


First, you can stop doing exactly what you have always been doing. It’s time to dance to a different tune.

Jimmy Dean, the country music singer said: “I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to reach my destination”.

If you were a professional soccer player, symphonic musician or elite surgeon, wouldn’t you hire a coach to be the very best you could be? Business owners are no different.The skills you possessed when you started your business are not the same ones you need to scale. Steps you can take are to read up on learning agility, listen to a Ted Talk or tune into a podcast on the subject. And, you can check out my coaching programs for success-driven entrepreneurs. We also offer Creativity and Agility workshops.

Contact me now and take a step toward greater success.

Until next time,

Gail Zelitzky                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Founder & CEO, GEARSHIFT                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        P.773-957-8582        E.