Using Disruption to achieve Growth

Following on from the my post recently, about what is your passion and your vision, unless you as a business entity do something different or has a differential approach to that of  your competitors, you will be swallowed up in the medium of blandness. Companies need to have a clear vision of why they are different to their competitors, why do you exist (your passion) in business?

In his new book The Innovator’s Manifesto, Michael Raynor, co-author with Clayton Christensen of the bestseller The Innovator’s Solution, argues that disruption theory (which explains how fringe ideas come to redefine entire markets) is not only a useful idea — it stands alone in actually predicting future success.

Christensen describes two different kinds of business innovation:

• Incremental Innovation, in essence building on your existing products, bring this new model to market , incremental, year-to-year improvements. We are all familiar with these, our new motorcar is incrementally better than the previous. This is most apparent in the reams of technological products.

• Disruptive innovation brings to market a product that is simple and more affordable. It takes root in a small niche but eventually reaches mainstream. These may be radical in their operation or completely new  to the market, and may meet an unmet demand. Think of Steve Jobs and the ipod, 10,000 songs in your pocket.

Traditionally, innovation management was handled as follows:

1. Variation: Start with lots of ideas.

2. Selection: Try out as many of your ideas as you can, to see what works.

3. Retention: Stick with the successes and abandon the failures.

However, says Raynor, success is more likely if you focus on the disruptive ideas, shape them, and then stick with them. You have first moved advantage, but you may not rest on this, as many of first movers have been swallowed up and left by those that follow, observe and do better.

1. Focus: Go where the money isn’t. Focus efforts on those markets and technologies that target un-served or over-served segments.

2. Shape: Seek ‘creative creation’. By serving profitable segments that incumbents see as inconsequential, new businesses can create a valuable foothold. Then, by building businesses around ‘enabling technologies’ –elements that allow performance to improve over time – entrants can move from that foothold to mainstream dominance.

3. Persist: Don’t fail fast, learn fast. Learning demands persistence: the willingness to stick with something despite early setbacks.

Contact us, we can assist you with your Innovation Challenges brian [at]

One thought on “Using Disruption to achieve Growth

  1. Having a clear vision of why they are different to their competitors is something so many companies do not make sure of in the beginning, and yet it is one of the most important things you can answer to help set yourself apart.

We appreciate your thoughts on our thoughts