You will often read in the press how disruptive technologies are changing the market place. Airbnb come in and change the hotel market, Uber uses technology to change the taxi market, Trip adviser changes the tourism market. We look at these huge shifts in the way that the world is working and point a finger technology… but perhaps we are missing the point. Whilst it is important, it is not the technology that creates the actual disruption… its people’s desire to connect and relinquish power that is disruptive.
The technology is simply the tool that allows the average, normal person to have power. What is disrupting markets is the fact that any large organisation that was traditionally protected purely by its size, can now be topped by someone just like you or me with an internet connection. To topple them all we must do is find a way to give more power to the average person and show more people how to connect with each other. And, there has never been a better time to do that.
Why is now so perfect… because people have lost all their faith in institutions. Brexit and Trump will tell you everything you need to know about how the general public feel about any long-standing organisation. People feel they have no security with their employers, governments, broadcasters or community structures.
Again, we have technology to thank for this shift. By allowing you and I access to all the information we could ever want most of us now see the world in a very different way. Over recent years we have seen bombardments of exposures about unethical practices of politicians, company executives and even cherished celebrities who many people looked up to. With the information we all have at our fingertips there is now no place to hide for those who are only looking after their own desires.
People now don’t feel safe in the relationships they have with their societies and communities. This is compounded by the fact that they are feeling lonelier than ever as their personal relationships suffer at the mercy of superficial social media ‘friendships’. They want to take back control and build real relationships again.
It all sounds quite depressing doesn’t it!? So that is why a little bit of technology can be so powerful IF that technology directly addresses the frustrations of the masses. Technology becomes the tool to be disruptive only when:
If you want to start a company that disrupts the market don’t worry about the technology, I think we can be pretty confident that whatever you want to create humans have the capability of producing it. Instead think about how you are going to empower others and help them connect to one another.