Disrupt your industry, before someone else does

by: Josh Linkner

When MTV launched back in 1981, the first music video aired was, aptly, Video Killed the Radio Star by the Buggles. The song, and the concept, made history as a new format of musical entertainment that rose to prominence.

The underlying message is one of transformation. Technological advances, global market expansion, ubiquitous access to information, and geopolitical trends have shaken up nearly every industry. If you haven’t yet experienced this in your own trade, disruption is probably lurking just around the corner. Hurricane-strength winds of change that make room for the new by blasting out the old.

Knowing this to be true, it makes me wonder why more than 80 percent of R&D investments by big businesses are directed at incremental change in existing models rather than forging new ones. All the while, fat cat executives scratch their heads with bewilderment when fresh startups emerge to redefine the rules through disruptive innovation.

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