VUCA encapsulates all the challenges that both companies and individuals come up against in an increasingly connected, digitized world.

Volatility means that small or major changes can crop up in our environment completely out of the blue, and the cause and effect can be tough to grasp.

Uncertainty refers to the fact that it is becoming increasingly difficult to anticipate and foresee events. Both past experience and forecasts are becoming an increasingly unreliable basis for determining the future. This means we are confronted with more and more surprises.

Complexity comes into play when we are no longer able to analyse and explain the cause (when) and effect (what happens next) of something. An action can have consequences that we could never have anticipated, either in terms of their scope or impact. It is unclear how things are linked.

Ambiguity, last of all, refers to a situation or information that cannot be evaluated clearly. Questions do not yield single answers, but multiple ones, and sometimes you have to say “that depends on ...”.

Companies cannot tackle the challenges posed by the VUCA world alone – it’s all about the people who work in these companies. New skills and mindsets can prove very helpful in overcoming these challenges.