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VUCA vs BANI

Maze 2

The VUCA model

We must find a way to interpret everyday new reality in a rapidly changing world. At the end of the 1980s, we started referring to the acronym VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity) to describe the world we lived in, and it has been our reference for several decades. However, the unexpected pandemic created a new reality that VUCA could no longer describe. The VUCA model we used to interpret and understand our reality of the world is now obsolete. 

 

What is the new framework helping us to describe our world, and what lies ahead?

 

VUCA has been replaced by a new acronym: BANI

 

While both acronyms emerged in response to turmoil: VUCA for post-cold war and BANI for a pandemic, BANI offers a new perspective of the world and a more accurate description of the current reality.

BANI stands for:

 

B Brittle

A Anxious

N Non-linear

I Incomprehensible

 

The uncertainty of the VUCA world has been translated into anxiety and fear. Think about the pandemic and the emotional states that such an unexpected event created in all of us. Or, think of how much data science and AI has been introduced into our professional and personal lives and the reality that we often find incomprehensible.

 

Benefits of the BANI model

 

The good news is that the BANI framework offers a way to respond to each of these challenges (brittle, anxious, non-linear, incomprehensible), since each of them, demand we develop competencies that give a new approach in response to the new world:

 

Brittle: resilience

Anxious: empathy and mindfulness

Non-linear: context and adaptivity

Incomprehensible: transparency and intuition

 

The BANI model goes a step further; it helps us locate the effects of adversities and challenges at an individual and organizational level. Once we can “locate” the challenge, we can proactively address it because, finally, we understand and contextualize our needs. 

BANI provides an exceptional tool for managing in a chaotic world.

 

Leadership in a BANI world

 

The emotional realm has been uncovered. To be successful, leaders must look at their emotions and face them. The new leadership style must combine courage to examine and address feelings and have an open-minded attitude to face the adversities of the BANI world.

Organizations must focus on developing relevant competencies that go along with the demands of the trials of the future within the BANI framework.