Managing Disruptive Technologies in business

Disruptive Technology

Every company in every industry works under certain forces—laws of organizational nature—that act powerfully to define what that company can and cannot do. Managers faced with disruptive technologies fail their companies when these forces overpower them. Lets take a look at history of manned flight innovation. The ancients who attempted to fly by strapping feathered wings to their arms and flapping with all their might as they leapt from high places invariably failed. Despite their dreams and hard work, they were fighting against some very powerful forces of nature. No one could be strong enough to win this fight. Flight became possible only after people came to understand the relevant natural laws and principles that defined how the world worked: the law of gravity, Bernoulli’s principle, and the concepts of lift, drag, and resistance. When people then designed flying systems that recognized or harnessed the power of these laws and principles, rather

than fighting them, they were finally able to fly to heights and distances that were previously unimaginable.

As in the analogy with manned flight, these laws are so strong that managers who ignore or fight them are nearly powerless to pilot their companies through a disruptive technology storm. However, that if managers can understand and harness these forces, rather than fight them, they can in fact succeed spectacularly when confronted with disruptive technological change. I am very confident that the great managers are very much capable on their own of finding the answers that best fit their circumstances. But they must first understand what has caused those circumstances and what forces will affect the feasibility of their solutions.

Here are some of excerpts from the book Innovator’s Dillema

Managers may think they control the flow of resources in their firms, in the end it is really customers and investors who dictate how money will be spent because companies with investment patterns that don’t satisfy their customers and investors don’t survive.

The highest-performing companies, in fact, are those that are the best at this, that is, they have well-developed systems for killing ideas that their customers don’t want. As a result, these companies find it very difficult to invest adequate resources in disruptive technologies—lower-margin opportunities that their customers don’t want—until their customers want them. And
by then it is too late.

As I read the book, I will be publishing some more excerpts from the book. Please keep watching this space.

Year 2007: That changed the digital world

I remember I was at NY when iPhone first released. It was Steve Jobs took the stage at the Moscone Center in San Francisco on January 9, 2007, to announce that Apple had reinvented the mobile phone.

I in fact got my unlocked iPhone-1 from a chinese store at Queens and its still with me now.

The moment that Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone turns out to have been a pivotal junction in the history of technology—and the world.”

There are vintage years in wine and vintage years in history, and 2007 was definitely one of the latter.
Because not just the iPhone emerged in 2007—a whole group of companies emerged in and around that year. Together, these new companies and innovations  have reshaped how people and machines communicate, create, collaborate, and think.”

In 2007, storage capacity for computing exploded thanks to the emergence that year of a company called Hadoop, making “big data” possible for all.”

In 2007, development began on an open-source platform for writing and collaborating on software, called GitHub, that would vastly expand the ability of software to start, as Netscape founder Marc Andreessen once put it, “eating the world.”

On September 26, 2006, Facebook, a social networking site that had been confined to users on college campuses and at high schools, was opened to everyone at least thirteen years old with a valid e-mail address, and started to scale globally.”

In 2007, a micro-blogging company called Twitter, which had been part of a broader start-up, was spun off as its own separate platform and also started to scale globally. ”

Change.org, the most popular social mobilization website, emerged in 2007.”

In late 2006, Google bought YouTube, and in 2007 it launched Android, an open-standards platform for devices that would help smartphones scale globally with an alternative operating system to Apple’s iOS. ”

In 2007, AT&T, the iPhone’s exclusive connectivity provider, invested in something called “software-enabled networks”—thus rapidly expanding its capacity to handle all the cellular traffic created by this smartphone revolution. According to AT&T, mobile data traffic on its national wireless network increased by more than 100,000 percent from January 2007 through December 2014.”

Also in 2007, Amazon released something called the Kindle, onto which, thanks to Qualcomm’s 3G technology, you could download thousands of books anywhere in the blink of an eye, launching the e-book revolution.”

In 2007, Airbnb was conceived in an apartment in San Francisco. In late 2006, the Internet crossed one billion users worldwide, which seems to have been a tipping point.

In 2007, Palantir Technologies, the leading company using big data analytics and augmented intelligence to, among other things, help the intelligence community find needles in haystacks, launched its first platform.”

In 2005, Michael Dell decided to relinquish his job as CEO of Dell and step back from the hectic pace and just be its chairman. Two years later he realized that was bad timing. “I could see that the pace of change had really accelerated. I realized we could do all this different stuff. So I came back to run the company in … 2007.”

It was also in 2007 that David Ferrucci, who led the Semantic Analysis and Integration Department at IBM’s Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, New York, and his team began building a cognitive computer called Watson—“a special-purpose computer system designed to push the envelope on deep question and answering, deep analytics, and the computer’s understanding of natural language,” noted the website HistoryofInformation.com. “‘Watson’ became the first cognitive computer, combining machine learning and artificial intelligence.”

In 2007, Intel introduced non-silicon materials—known as high-k/metal gates (the term refers to the transistor gate electrode and transistor gate dielectric)—into microchips for the first time. ”

Last but certainly not least, in 2007 the cost of DNA sequencing began to fall dramatically as the biotech industry shifted to new sequencing techniques and platforms, leveraging all the computing and storage power that was just exploding.”

Excerpt From: Thomas L. Friedman. “Thank You for Being Late.”

Are you scared of starting your own, then this post is for you?

Start your own business

Happy new year 2018 and its time to live your dream. Are you planning to start something new in 2018 and have already thought pros and cons about it. And finally family life, EMIs etc. Finally concluded lets wait for some more time and then will think of my own. Then this is the post for you. Here are collection of 37 quotes from famous people and will definitely give you adrenaline to get started.

  1. “Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.” – Pablo Picasso

  2. “Don’t worry about failures, worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.” – Jack Canfield

  3. “You can’t plan for everything or you never get started in the first place.” – Jim Butcher

  4. “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” – Theodore Roosevelt

  5. “Start before you’re ready.” – Steven Pressfield

  6. “A year from now you may wish you had started today.” – Karen Lamb

  7. “Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.” – Les Brown

  8. “Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.” – Ray Bradbury

  9. “You don’t have to be good to start … you just have to start to be good!” – Joe Sabah

  10. “If you can dream it, you can do it.” – Walt Disney

  11. “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

  12. “You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.” – Beverly Sills

  13. “You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.” – Henry Ford

  14. “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” – Walt Disney

  15. “The hardest thing about getting started, is getting started.” – Guy Kawasaki

  16. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain

  17. “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” – Jack London

  18. “The greatest amount of wasted time is the time not getting started.” – Dawson Trotman

  19. “Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.” – Farrah Gray

  20. “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford

  21. “If you have a dream, you can spend a lifetime studying, planning, and getting ready for it. What you should be doing is getting started.” – Drew Houston

  22. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

  23. “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” – Les Brown

  24. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” – Mark Twain

  25. “A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” – Lao Tsu

  26. “It’s time to start living the life you’ve imagined.” – Henry James

  27. “The beginning is always NOW.” – Roy Bennett

  28. “It is never too late to be what you might have been.” – George Eliot

  29. “All our dreams can come true – if we have the courage to pursue them.” – Walt Disney

  30. “The only thing that stands between you and grand success in living are these two things: getting started and never quitting!” – Robert H. Schuller

  31. “What is not started today is never finished tomorrow.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

  32. “The greatest time wasted, is the time getting started.” – Dawson Trotman

  33. “The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps – we must step up the stairs.” – Vance Havner

  34. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” – Sally Berger

  35. “He has half the deed done who has made a beginning.” – Horace

  36. “The distance is nothing; it’s only the first step that is difficult.” – Marquise du Deffand

  37. “We cannot do everything at once, but we can do something at once.” – Calvin Coolidge

Startup shutdowns in India

Startup Shutdowns In India: 8 Startups That Called It Quits In 2017

Today, there was a news that 8 startups closed their office in 2017. This is not a good news for startup industry and it must have impacted everybody associated with these startups. I wish they will again rise with a new beginning.

Last year, between January and August 2016, reportedly 29 startup shutdowns in India took place. Hyperlocal startups were the hardest hit. As compared to 2015, reported 15 startup shutdowns that were reported in media.

If you further analyze these startups and their business model, then you can find that most of these startups are some kind of copy or replica of an existing successful startup or solution. Copying another business idea is permissible as long as there is some kind of innovation added into it and market is yet to get saturation in terms of competitions. But blindly copying an existing business model will be a disastrous. In the travel space, there were some unsuccessful startups like travelgenie, travelchacha, etc. Its not that their product is bad but they simply failed to attract customer. Most of the impacted startups are in hotel bookings and aggregation, hyperlocal, niche ecommerce and foodtech.

In reality, making small changes to things that already exist and successful might lead to a local maximum but it wont help in getting into global success. FlipKart is still a Indian retail giant, with almost no global presence. You could build a best version of iPhone app to order toilet papers but iteration without a bold plan wont take it to 0 to 1. A company is the strangest place for all for an indefinite optimism i.e. why should you expect your business to succeed without a plan to make it happen? Darwinism idea of evolution maybe fine for other context but in startup, intelligent design works best.

Innovation or customization

Our future depends upon how we try to progress in our day to day life. The progress means changing every aspect of life with regard to time with some new happenings. When we talk about new happenings, we generally think of improving some existing solutions and then adding glue to make it different. That is what makes it a different  and with proven success in it. In the history, there are enterprises succeeded by copying and updating existing solution and even making the solution much better compare to original idea, this is hybrid and there is nothing wrong in it. But some time, some companies copy an existing solution and then modify it in such a way that the modified product is termed as innovative one.

Apple has changed the way we use mobile phones, though before iPhone there were Palm OS with touch screen but the actual innovation for the User happened after iPhone came to market. This is not innovation but this is customization that refines how User should use phone. There was a paradigm shift on how User should use phone using touch screen features. This came when Apple was on the verge of perform or perish. I still remember those days of attending Steve Jobs’s iPhone presentation. The same way, ebay created a market place of used items and it was instant success. These are the few instances of how consumer’s usage pattern was redefined using technology.

Its not always true that innovation starts from 0. Some time innovation comes from existing products too. Twitter is another example of customization of blog and sms, which made Users to write anything of 140 characters.

The summary is, irrespective of whether you copy an idea or invent something new, it all matters how your product/service impacts Consumer behavior and how its perceived by consumer.