Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I know people who regularly break the law. A lot of people – good citizens, family people. People who bake cakes for fundraisers. People who regularly visit their elderly parents. They have been driven to it because they were tired, desperate, frustrated, left stranded, unable to communicate, left in the dark.
Yes, I am talking about Uber users.
The word ‘disruption’ cannot be used often enough for Uber. It feels like the perfect case study of a classic tool that we at Bedrock Insight use regularly in our workshops: Imagine the rules of a category. Now – break those rules.
Umm, I’m starting to sound like I might know too much about this illegal activity…..so you get the picture. True disruption looks at the category rules and breaks them. True disruption also looks at what consumer needs are and addresses them – it’s not just about making Donald Trump type noise. (Please don’t let the American public prove me wrong on that one). In this day and age it often involves technology but it isn’t just about the technology like it was in the earlier days when the Walkman disappeared. So the playing field is open wider than two guys in a Silicon Valley garage.
There will always be people who try to take down disruptive innovation, to pressure regulators and policymakers to stop the change. The NSW Taxi Council is clearly trying to take down Uber with their latest campaign: Ridesharing – it’s no Safer than Hitchhiking. Should they invest in attacking the competition or instead recognise what Uber has done and try to evolve themselves? When disruptive innovation hits, as in the advent of the personal computer, which rendered mainframes and minicomputers obsolete, the competition can be slow to recognise the threat until long-time customers jump ship. iTunes and music downloads, eBay and online sales, RyanAir and cheap flights; each of these innovations has overturned age-old industry practices and brought much in the way of change.
The number of companies that have been successful by rejecting change and ignoring consumer sentiment is almost zero. Does anyone remember Kodak? In this day and age, the only constant IS change. Can you disrupt in your market? If not, what can you learn from those around you who are disrupting? Are you disruption-proof? We at Bedrock Insight would love to help you to find out.
For more information on how we can help contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org