Thesis Accountabiliy Essay

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SPOTLIGHT ON HOW TO MANAGE DISRUPTION

Spotlight

ARTWORK Henrique Oliveira, Tapumes Rice Gallery, Houston, 2009, plywood 4.7 x 13.4 x 2m

It’s not enough to know that a threat is coming. You need to know whether it’s coming right for you. by Maxwell Wessel and Clayton M. Christensen
56 Harvard Business Review December 2012

PHOTOGRAPHY: NASH BAKER

Surviving Disruption

HBR.ORG

Maxwell Wessel is a fellow at the Forum for Growth and Innovation and a senior researcher at Harvard Business School.

Clayton M. Christensen is the Kim B. Clark Professor of Business Administration at HBS.

D
SPOTLIGHT ON HOW TO MANAGE DISRUPTION

Disruptive innovations are like missiles launched at your business. For 20 years we’ve
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Managers must not only disrupt

themselves but also consider the fate of their legacy operations, for which decades or more of pro tability may lie ahead. We propose a systematic way to chart the path and pace of disruption so that you can fashion a more complete strategic response. To determine whether a missile will hit you dead-on, graze you, or pass you altogether, you need to: ness model; der the disrupter from co-opting your current advantages in the future. To guide you in determining a disrupter’s strengths, we introduce the concept of the extendable core—the aspect of its business model that allows the disrupter to maintain its performance advantage as it creeps upmarket in search of more and more customers. We then explore how a deep understanding of what jobs people want your company to do for them—and what jobs the disrupter could do better with its extendable core—will give you a clearer picture of your relative advantage. We go on to delineate the barriers a disrupter would need to overcome to undermine you in the future. This approach will enable you to see which parts of your current business are most vulnerable to disruption and—just as important—which parts you can defend.

LEGACY BUSINESS

DISRUPTER

Handheld GPS

Cell Phone GPS

ADVANTAGES
GPS apps are included in the smartphone price GPS data are easily integrated with information from other apps, such as restaurant reviews and reservation systems

WHAT JOBS DO CUSTOMERS

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