If you are working towards an ambitious and potential achievable goal such as becoming a CEO of a large enterprise, disruption is unnecessary. Most sane people will tell you this. You are pursuing sustain innovation by providing more value to existing customers. But if as an individual you suspect you wont be happy at the top rung of the ladder you’re climbing, you should disrupt yourself.
I bumped into one of my batch mates , who at present is the India ( I guess Far East Asia included) CEO of a FMCG major. He prided himself on the position he has achieved and rightfully so. Its a busy world he lives in, a regular hive of activity. Or inactivity, in my case.What am I doing now ? I just stopped writing as I am glaring perplexedly at my reading glasses which have slipped off my nose and fallen on the carpet. So near and yet so far. I have a great intuition nowadays by subconsciously registering effective ideas. Recently I went on impulse one fine day to Puri ( by just walking into the airport and buying a ticket from Calcutta to Bhubaneswar) just to gaze at the never-ending waves of the ocean while thinking plots for a new story and some odd ideas. Have I enriched my quality of life by causing disruption in quitting a C level job on an impulse and plunging into being an innovator, at which I failed again and again ? Is there still time left for causing a major disruption ?
Current stakeholders in your life will probably encourage you to avoid disruption. It is fear (of hellfire and damnation, or karmic rebirth as a cockroach or a Sahara manager, whichever is more scarifying). I hope you know by now that fear gave rise to religion, with all its vast booty, from the wealth of the Vatican to the treasure troves of Tirupati. Fear is the obvious instigator of wars and the arms industries they have spawned. The booming health industry – or, more appropriately disease industry – is also fuelled by fear. Back to the topic. But remember, the most overlooked economic engine is you. If you really want to move the world forward, you need to innately innovate and disrupt yourself. Overcome the fear and you yourself can potentially become the industry.
In my quest to disrupt, I destructed. That was an unpardonable error in which I followed Joseph Schumpeter’s theory of creative destruction, which lies at the heart of innovation economics. Disruption can also create non-destructive creation. Take Viagra for example – did it make any earlier technology obsolete ? No, it unlocked new demand by offering a real solution to men past their prime. Yusufbhai’s Gramin bank created the microfinance industry. What about social networking – where this blog will be ! Established companies typically don’t like the notion of creative disruption as it may threaten the status quo. As a result market creating moves are regularly undermined and less dollars allocated due to perennial bottom line issues and this is a regular trap one falls in across functions. If one is intelligent and creative then please project your work as non-destructive creation and simultaneous disruption. In next life of karmic rebirth you may become a Putin or Modi ! Say meow like the cat I painted in my quest for creative restructuring of reality and ‘Lead the Change’