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Business strategy models can take inspiration from many places. In this TV show Dean van Leeuwen discusses innovative disruption and the two aspects that leaders need to focus on, to make the most of it.
Sebastian Thrun, he is one of the leader scientists on the Google self-driving car project. When he was 18 year old he lost his best friend in a car accident, and Sebastian set himself the goal of saving 1.2million lives every single year, now 1.2 million lives is the number of people that die in car accidents every year. As the lead scientist on the Google self-driving car Sebastian has been doing some amazing things and what’s, if you think about the self-driving car, what it really is doing is it has thousands of these magical sensors round the car and it creates a 3D real time map of the world environment around it, so it is capturing massive amounts of information. It’s processing that information in real time, if it wasn’t processing it in real time, there wouldn’t be hope. These cars they can drive around unassisted without anyone behind the steering wheel, and it’s using that information to real and immediate valuable effect. So what we’re seeing is that because of our ability to do all of this, and we all know because of Moore’s law, computers have been doubling in speed every 18 months, but in the last few years, if you combine our ability for massive amounts of storage space, broadband and WiFi, that doubling in speed has really started to mean something, to the point now where many of the things that we thought were impossible, so self-driving cars we thought were impossible, we can now do.
3D printers, it’s the same thing, you know gathering massive amounts of information, scanning the object using a CAD file, printing the object out right in front of you immediately. Rapid prototyping, it’s the same concept our ability to gather massive amounts of information, process it in real time, and use it to valuable and immediate effect, and that’s the key, the first key thing that’s happening at the moment.
So business leaders need to be asking two questions, what’s your Google car? And what can you do that you once believed was impossible? Because you probably can now do it because of the power behind these technologies.
The second thing is, generational. You need to be understanding how the different generations look at these technologies. Many of these new technologies, these new innovations are for the younger, the Gen Y and these digital natives. It’s not weird it’s not something that’s different, it’s very normal for them. Douglas Adams the Author said that anything that happens when you are born is tottaly normal, anything that happens when you’re in your 30s, your 20s and your 30s is revolutionary, anything that happens after you turn 40 is just weird and wrong, ok. So for most business leaders over the age of 40, most of what is happening around us is totally weird and wrong, for the young digital natives, all of these new technologies are totally normal, they are not even impressed by them. And we need to understand that, I don’t think we have even started to understand the disruptive force that the digital native’s generation is going to bring to the workplace. So to understand the impact, or the disruptive impact of technology, the two things are Impact of digital natives on your business as customers, as customers and as employees, and then how do you gather massive amounts of information, process that information, in real time and use to immediate and valuable effect.
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