Disruption is a process, not an event, and innovations can only be disruptive relative to something else.
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Disruption works two ways – you have a disruptor and the disrupted. Disruptive innovations have disrupted existing business platforms for many years. The best early example of disruption would probably be digital camera innovators disrupting Eastman Kodak’s camera business. As digitisation has gained momentum, so has disruption.
Some disruptive businesses succeed whereas others do not. It is a misconception that entrants are disruptive by virtue of their success. Success is not built into the definition of disruption. Likewise, there are examples of disrupted business platforms that have benefited from disruption.
Looking ahead, disruption can only intensify, given the rapid development of new and innovative technologies. Driverless cars are not far away, and robots will soon be able to do what humans have done for many years. We also note that disruption is not only a technology story. Just like Amazon have done massive damage to traditional retail businesses, they will soon do the same to banks, as they move in to that industry.