18th January 2006 - The Innovator’s Dilemma

It was truly a remarkable experience to read "The Innovator’s Dilemma" by Clayton M. Christensen. In this book, Christensen focus on the disruptive technologies that have redefined competition and made existing well managed organizations fail while new entrants have succeeded.

Disruptive technologies in generally share the characteristics of not being able to cater the mainstream markets as they are typically inferior feature-wise to the established brands, yet they are typically radically different in terms of means to delivering the technical effect customers seek, and thus cheaper. In addition the disruptive technology has an effectiveness trend that promises that it will be able to cater the needs of the mainstream market one day; and when this day happens it is much too often too late for the established brands to focus their processes and values in order to meet the challenge of the new technology.

The challenge for established organizations is that their market analysis will be lying by design when methodically seeking for higher margins and the customer feedback to support them. Disruptive technologies tend not to be what customers want –until they want them…! Therefore, radically new approaches to innovation are necessary, and most likely the answer to future needs and wants of customers will be found outside the established organization and in a segment initially not deemed profitable. Effectively, disruptive technologies will be attacking the future markets below the radars of the established organizations.

Christensen’s cases and analysis are persuading and thorough, and in my opinion this book is a "must read" for anyone responsible for development and innovation in any organization whether low- or hi-tech.

On a personal note, I feel pretty confident that the business intelligence product we deliver in TARGIT is indeed a disruptive technology. Compared to the well established highly priced and complex competitors’ offerings we have emerged from a much simpler, lower priced offering, which over the years has grown more and more sophisticated. At the present time we are now able to cater the same customers as the more established brands, but by design our solutions are cheaper and more effective overall since they are easier to use and cheaper to develop and maintain.

If the above seems interesting, come visit www.targit.com and see for yourself… ;-)

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Updated 2006-01-18

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The official homepage of Morten Middelfart and CALM. Computer Aided Leadership and Management (CALM) is an inspirational speculation on where mankind may be heading in the quest to leverage computer potentials for helping individuals and organizations to self-actualize their symbiotic potentials.

The time frame for this well-informed and provocative speculation on relatively near-term and more distant potentials is clearly within mankind's grasp. Dr. Middelfart argues persuasively that within the next one or two decades, symbiotic links with "intelligent machines" will surely leverage people's potentials, far beyond all human progress to date!

Altogether, a tour de force of well-informed contemporary insights and maturely reasoned speculation; affording possible stepping stones and a creative springboard for what may lie ahead. As has been said: "Man's reach should exceed his grasp; else what's a heaven for?”


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