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Though Brian’s post is a short, introductory one, it immediately introduces a bevy of significant challenges facing business leaders right now. This isn’t the best time nor forum to tackle all of them today, so I chose to focus on one underlying theme to this pretty common discussion: flexibility / adaptability.
I pulled three key quotes from Brian’s well-written post below. This is a very timely discussion, as I am currently writing a second e-book called The #DISRUPTORS Manifesto, which addresses the four pillars of successful unconventional marketing. And one of those is the need to be flexible and adaptable in today’s ever-evolving consumer landscape. As Brian points out, change is never going to be a non-factor in our everyday lives and the idea of uprooting our existing thought process and procedures can be frightening as all hell. That is why I strongly believe the defining element of success in 2011 and beyond is the ability to adapt to emerging trends and technologies as well as consumer behaviors. A fundamental part of this is the willingness to give in to the fact that our world is anything but stagnant. That requires shorter project timelines, quicker launches, more testing and real-time reactive actions (not to mention the willingness to fail!).
Scary? Definitely. Challenging? Certainly. Exciting? Hell yes. There is infinite opportunity in such an environment and only the companies willing to expose themselves to consumer feedback and interactions (you know, like human beings…..) will rise to the top. And nobody is better equipped for flexibility and adaptability than small businesses (our favorite clients). Big corps are going to have trouble here – the bureaucracy, the red tape, the layers and layers of approval, etc. But we’ve already seen success stories with those brands willing to put into place the necessary steps to excel in the digital Darwinism times.
My only question about this post relates to Brian’s use of the term “disruption”. If you regularly read our blog or Twitter feed, you know we are huge fans of the term. Disruption creates new opportunities and breaks poor habits and routines. I’m wondering if the author defines “disruptive” as a positive or negative driver of behavior. And I may very well be splitting hairs here, so I’ll be looking out for the next installment in this series.
“Change is inevitable, but it is rarely easy.”
“As new technology makes its way into into everyday life and workflow, certain devices, applications, and networks disrupt the norm and begin to impact behavior.”
“The question is at what point does emerging technology or new behavior become disruptive? And more importantly, what systems, processes, and protocol are in place that recognize disruption, assess opportunity, and facilitate the testing of new ideas?”