Planning the next disruptive technology

This Easter blog today is about disruptive change. Imagine that the company you work for has decided to try to just create the next life-changing technology. Your boss is very impressed with your work. As a result, your boss places you in charge of creating the next “disruptive technology”.  Because you are both excited and concerned about the responsibilities you are being given, you ask your boss to explain exactly what he means by disruptive technology in order to make sure you understand the job that you are being given. You start to do some research on disruptive technology. Your research quickly identifies the kind of things that do notqualify as disruptive technology.  Here are a couple of items that don’t make the list:

Small gains in one direction

Disruptive technology does not consist of small gains in a singular direction. Some of the world’s greatest businesses pursued a singular goal with total focus. Because their goal was in a singular direction, they were able to make small, incremental gains consistently. These small, incremental gains started to look like massive growth over time.  This is the general way in which most companies will experience their greatest growth.

Take Walmart for example. Walmart started off with a simple concept by an Arkansas businessman named Sam Walton. Walton’s goal was to offer people convenient products at a competitive price. When Sam Walton began Walmart, there were plenty of retail stores across America. Walton’s goal was to build a store around the price, not the product. As a result, Sam Walton started to aggressively pursue reducing prices. If you shop at any Walmart in America, it will be immediately clear that their business is not built around customer service or around the quality of their products. Walmart focuses on the price of their products. Through this strategy, Walmart has become the largest retail chain in the world.  Walmart has created some innovative and cutting-edge approaches to reducing costs. However, Walmart would not be considered a disruptive company.

Large gains in many directions

During your research you might even look in a different industry. You start to examine the rideshare industry to see if this constitutes disruptive technology. It is becoming clearer across America that rideshare companies are starting to change the way we get from place to place. If you were to visit New York City 20 years ago, you’d have had two options in getting from place to place- You could either take the subway or you could get in a Yellow Cab. That is no longer the only way to get around New York City.

The New York City subway system moves millions of people each week to this day. The Yellow Cab Company is still one of the largest transportation companies in New York City. However, another industry has cropped up out of nowhere. This industry has changed the way we look at transportation. Uber and Lyft came up with the genius idea of turning every privately-owned vehicle into a taxi. 

Uber and Lyft came up with a different strategy than Walmart. Their strategy is to grow by moving in all directions at once. As a result, Uber and Lyft came out of nowhere and became major businesses in the transportation industry almost overnight. Uber and Lyft are changing the way we think about other industries now as well. Companies like Airbnb were started by people who decided to do the same thing with their houses that they are doing with their vehicles. Airbnb turned every home into a potential Bed-N-Breakfast. I don’t think we’ve seen the end of the industries that will be affected by the idea of growth in all directions like Uber and Airbnb.  These companies are changing the way that we think about the hotel and transportation industry. As awesome as these companies are, they are not creating something entirely new. 

Creating something entirely new 

Disruptive technology goes much further than creating major gains over time in us in the same industry.  Disruptive technology changes the way we think about things in our world. It is the equivalent to creating something entirely new.  Disruptive technology creates an entire industry that doesn’t currently exist. By now, you’re starting to understand the significance of what your boss is asking you to accomplish. Your boss droped a big bomb on you when he or she asked you to build a disruptive technology.  Maybe your boss explained the reason for pushing you to create something new… Every business researcher will tell you the greatest gains in a company or industry always come from new growth. 

One of the best examples of disruptive technology today is artificial intelligence. We are now asking TV remote controls and home stereo speakers to answer questions about all facets of life. Artificial Intelligence (AI) does much more than enable us to ask our phones to read out sports scores. Artificial intelligence is changing the way that we interact with technology. Currently the auto industry is doing incredible research on automated vehicles. There is no way to know just how far AI will take us. Many researchers believe there are few areas of life that will not be impacted by artificial intelligence in the future. Mankind, because we are created in the image of God, are incredibly innovative.

This Easter blog today is not really about technology at all. It is about explaining the significance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. God sent his son, Jesus, to the cross to do much more than just to make you into a better person. He sent his son, Jesus, to earth to create something entirely new. This is what the Bible describes in John 3:3. Jesus didn’t leave Heaven in order to make bad people better. He came to fundamentally change people at their core level (Colossians 3:9-10).   The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the ultimate proof that a new future is waiting for anyone who comes to Jesus in faith (John 11:25).  God’s Holy Spirit is the ultimate innovator. Just like disruptive technology creates new industries out of current technology, God is in the business of creating entirely new people.  Perhaps you are reading this blog today and realizing that you have made some big mistakes with your life. Perhaps for the first time God is revealing to you that you need to fundamentally change at the core level. You need something much bigger than just becoming a better person. You need a new heart (Ezekiel 36:26).   I want to challenge you to surrender to King Jesus today through a simple prayer of faith. It sounds something like this:

Jesus, I realize that I’m a sinner. As hard as I try, I can’t escape the mistakes that I’ve committed in the past. I don’t want to live like this anymore. Today, I turn from my sins and trust you to rescue me. Today, I ask you to change me entirely into a new person. Today, I come to you in faith asking for your forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. Amen.

If you’ve just made that commitment, we’d like to pray for you. Please email us at cbc@calvaryministries.com.

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