Digital experts Todd Hewlin and Scott Snyder lay out a modern guide to business success and longevity: Become the disrupter rather than the disrupted. Using their assessments and implementing their rules will help you digitize your firm and your career to avoid a slow death at the hands of start-ups and digital natives. Either way, you’ll be in a better position to establish a solid defense and offense in fighting your digital battles. Leaders of established firms will probably gain the most from the authors’ ideas.
Digital disruption works both ways: Many large, traditional firms have gotten smart – and fight back.
You’ve heard the story: Nimble upstarts with staffs of social media–savvy millennials change entire traditional industries by digitizing stale business models. The giants of the industry, helpless to fight back, wither and disappear. For examples, consider Blockbuster or Nokia.
In truth, many incumbents develop strategies to defend themselves and even turn the tables on the start-ups. General Motors, for example, nearly went bankrupt in 2009 but has since modernized aggressively, building on its early forays into electric cars. It has stormed into the market with its Chevy Volt and Chevy Bolt lines. It’s also participating in the ride-sharing trend and preparing for a driverless future with large investments in start-ups like Cruise and Lyft.
Digital disruption can feel so urgent and fast-moving that it paralyzes some leaders.
History shows that disruption takes time. Amazon, for example, has been hacking away at brick-and-mortar retailers since the mid-1990s. That said, you can’t afford to wait. Plan your transformation...