What Is Disruption?
Disruption is the act of shifting or changing things to create something that is different than what currently exists. Disruption can take many forms, from hostile corporate takeover to political coup d’état. Some disruption is profoundly harmful and can eradicate a race, culture or political structure. Creative Disruption is basically, breaking the rules and challenging the status quo to come up with something new and different. It is an energy that is necessary when things in business have become stagnant or are no longer working. Creative disruption is about creating something new through the process of dismantling something that exists for the purpose of creation. It is a pro-active and intentional action for the progress of the business or organization. Disruption, signals a departure from the norm, it disrupts mediocrity and restructures a company, organization or team towards greatness.
Disruption Requires Revolutionary Thinking
In order to have creative disruption an individual or organization must start by having revolutionary thinking. This means revolutionizing the way that things are done, taking a hard look at what is working within the organization and what is not, then asking questions that address how things became stagnant, how these things can be “undone”, and then clearly defining a desired outcome.
What do you want your business to look like when it has been revolutionized? What role do your employees play in the disruption? What impact do you want to have on the world? How will you add value to your company, your customer, and your staff? As you add value to your community, whether local or global, you add value to your company.
What Creates Stagnation?
Stagnation is one of the prime triggers that indicates a need for creative disruption. It is defined as having stopped, ceasing to flow, failure to develop or progress and a state or quality of being sluggish and dull. Complacency is the breeding ground for stagnation. When a company becomes complacent, it loses innovation, creativity, inspiration and power. The role of a good CEO is to create disruption on an ongoing basis, continuously modifying the vision of an organization to accommodate goals and objectives while the world and marketplace transform. Stagnation is instant death to a company or organization. Kodak is a very good example. The demand for film and photography has been almost completely eradicated by the development of affordable digital cameras. Cameras themselves have changed radically since almost everyone with a modern cell phone has a high quality camera built-in! Talk about creative disruption!
From the late 1800s until the 1990s Kodak was synonymous with photography, film, and cameras. They became stagnant in the late 1990s and filed bankruptcy in 2012. Most young people in the current generation have no idea what Kodak is. This example of stagnation also shows us the value of creative disruption.
Kodak – What If…
What if in the 1990s someone from Kodak said “Stop The Music! We have become completely stagnant and need to update in order to compete in the changing market!” Well, they might get fired. Or they might be the CEO of a multibillion dollar company right now. There is a great book written a few years ago called “Who Moved My Cheese”. In this book the author talks about how the “cheese” or money, market and ability to do business changes. He writes it from the perspective of mice feeding on cheese. The result is basically, if you keep going to the same place after the cheese is gone you will starve because there is no more cheese there. If, on the other hand, you notice the cheese is dwindling, it’s time for new discovery as to where you’re going to find your food. The earlier you start on this journey the less catastrophic the transformation is to finding the new cheese. The mistake that most often occurs, as we wait too long to begin the journey and either starve looking for the new source of business, as Kodak did, or, we ignore the warning signs and scramble like crazy to catch up.
Start Positive Disruption!
Now is the time to analyze your business, synchronize your teams, make room for innovation so that you can be moving towards the new cheese while you still have a food supply left where the dwindling cheese exists! For tips and tools on how to begin this process go to TobyChristensen.com/services