compass sun dial image for Revelry blog post on navigating via adaptability

It’s no secret that life gets crazy sometimes. Adaptation can play an important role in surviving these moments, as well as in thriving over the long term. But how does one learn to embrace unexpected change? Do we follow the example of others? Do we find our own way? How do we make the best decision when they all seem good… or bad? Since we’re all only human and difficult experiences are inevitable, cultivating a skillset that ultimately fosters “adaptability” is crucial to success.

Critical thinking is perhaps the cornerstone of adaptability. Sharpening your critical thinking skills may seem challenging. You may think you either have these skills or you don’t, or that they take years to develop. But becoming a critical thinker doesn’t need to be a difficult process; it just requires consistency. Thirty minutes of reading, writing, planning, or brainstorming each day can greatly improve your ability to critically think and problem solve. 

Planning is another important component of adaptability. Learning how to, and when to, comes with experience. The most efficient software engineers I know are able to identify when the team needs to slow down, take a step back, plan or re-plan. When it comes to planning specifically, a strategy we use frequently at Revelry includes the entire engineering team. Regardless of seniority, everyone’s opinion is important; everyone has something to offer. This is because someone with less experience may have less bias towards particular implementations, while someone with more experience may suggest a greater variety of strategies or considerations. The approach encourages two-way knowledge transfer, as well as allows everyone to gain planning experience and enjoy the sense of fulfillment that comes with driving technical implementation.

Adaptability also calls for compassion. Thankfully, one of Revelry’s core values, “Be Excellent to Each Other,” is all about compassion. We plan with compassion. We communicate with compassion. We implement with compassion. And we’re asked to treat OURSELVES with compassion. Empathy, positivity, respect, and trust are all contagious – and all support a successful plan, project, and life. Compassion is one of the most important factors contributing to team cohesion, and without team cohesion, it’s difficult to adapt.

  • Planning with compassion may look like being inclusive: encouraging the hesitant to voice their opinions, ideas and concerns. It may look like thinking about future developers, and how friendly a code base will be to work with if we pursue a certain implementation path. It may look like ensuring a project that we’re working on is accessible for the visually impaired. It may look like weighing Operating Costs vs Carrying Costs to streamline onboarding or feature building.
  • Communicating with compassion is as simple as asking if someone needs help when they’ve been heads-down for a while, perhaps working to solve a complex problem. It may look like transparency: whether that means discussing technical decisions out in the open, via Slack or email threads, or in a Github Issue. It absolutely means leaving thorough documentation so that the whole team is able to norm on product definitions.

A team with strong critical thinking skills, effective planning skills, and compassion is an adaptable team. Business needs change frequently… especially in our current economy. A key component in app scalability is its ability to adapt to these changing business needs. With Crypto, NFTs, AI, and whatever the future holds, an adaptable team should be able to find a way to integrate the latest and greatest technology into an application because they’ll have built an application that’s able to scale in any business direction. The composition of a scalable app requires an adaptable team, and a scalable app ultimately enables your business to capitalize on the latest and greatest technology, to get ahead of the market, and ultimately create a competitive edge.

Want to chat more on this topic (or any topic related to success in software development)? Connect with a member of our team.

We're building an AI-powered Product Operations Cloud, leveraging AI in almost every aspect of the software delivery lifecycle. Want to test drive it with us? Join the ProdOps party at