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Adapt to win: ACV launches playbook on agile learning for startups

Published on July 26, 2023


The world of startups is dynamic, characterized by constant innovation and adaptability. This is what AC Ventures (ACV) discussed in its latest online event for founders titled “Building Agile Learning Culture for Startups.” In parallel, the session also marked the launch of ACV’s signature playbook for tech startups of the same name.  

The virtual gathering took place on Wednesday, 26 July 26, 2023, from 6:30 to 8 pm, and brought together prominent startup teams, entrepreneurs, and various tech ecosystem stakeholders from across the region interested in understanding the latest nuances on innovation culture.

Learning agility is a person’s capability and willingness to rapidly acquire new knowledge and skills. It is divided into two main parts: learning orientation, which is the readiness to learn quickly, and learning ability, the mental capacity to identify patterns and trends. This blend of skills, vital in our ever-changing business world, allows individuals to adapt swiftly, making it a must-have for a future-ready workforce.

“In creating our latest playbook, ACV’s goal was to empower startups with a nuanced methodology that their larger competitors likely do not have. Given that companies prioritizing agile learning in executives produce 25% higher profit margins compared to competitors, we aimed to provide a practical guide to cultivating this crucial trait. We envision a startup culture that thrives amidst volatility, maintaining a competitive edge through continuous learning,” said Derisa Zahara, ACV’s Associate VP of Organization and Talent.

The event and playbook sought to spotlight the indispensability of agile learning amidst the rapidly transforming business panorama. Companies today grapple with an increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environment where such agility serves as a vital buoy for sustained business growth.


Alvin Hadiono from AHa!gility and Jessica Jap, a prominent member of ACV’s portfolio company Astro, spoke on a panel and unpacked the critical role of learning agility, its status as a cultivable skill, and the strategies necessary for the development of an agile organization. The dialog was facilitated by Derisa, bringing essential bits of advice and intel into a coherent conversation for an audience of entrepreneurs.

Agile learning is a fascinating ability that empowers individuals and organizations to perpetually grow, adjust, and apply gleaned insights from past experiences to new, fluid situations. This unique capability paves the way for businesses to sustain a competitive edge, usher in higher profit margins, and bolster response abilities. A noteworthy observation is the prevalent heightened engagement across organizations marked by agile leadership.

ACV’s latest playbook presents the skill not as an inherent trait, as widely believed, but as a capability that can be developed. Agile learners exhibit adaptability to ever-shifting situations, demonstrating a spectrum of behaviors like experimentation, taking performance risks, collaboration, feedback seeking, and reflective thinking. With strategic planning and by identifying development needs, learning agility can be fostered in any individual.

The playbook further underlines the importance of proactive leadership in establishing an agile organization. It stresses the necessity for a supportive learning environment, collaborative work culture, and HR practices that stimulate learning agility. 

With the event, ACV shared pragmatic insights on the formulation of a startup culture geared toward agile learning. Armed with tools to identify and nurture it as a skill, startups may learn to flourish in the face of unpredictability and navigate toward long-lasting success.

Download the playbook via: https://acv.vc/resources/playbook-agile-learning-culture/

See also: AC Ventures, BCG release key report on decarbonization and Indonesia’s green growth potential

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