It’s that simple.
Here’s a simple list of companies that were once great successes. Then they weren’t: Blockbuster. Borders. Lehman Bros. Kodak. Circuit City. RadioShack. Pan-Am. Enron. E.F. Hutton.RCA. Tower Records. Polaroid. Woolworths. Compaq. Arthur Anderson.
The list could go on…. companies that were leaders in their time, and then failed, due to a lack of innovation; a failure to adapt; ethical problems; or other factors that could have been avoided.
In the next 10 years, we will see a number of established companies added to the list. Right now, some of them could be making decisions to avoid that fate.
Here’s some interesting food for thought from a great article on the trend in which every company is becoming a computer company:
“The S&P 500 lists the 500 most valuable companies in the United States. Dick Foster, a McKinsey consultant, studied their average lifespan. It is a sobering tale that reminds just how fast-paced business innovation has become. In 1937, the average tenure of companies on the list was 75 years. By 1960, it was 61 years. In 1980, 37 years. In 2000, 26 years. Today, an average of 15 years.”
If you are a senior executive, you need a serious gut-check. Here you go:
Your chance for longevity and survival is shrinking.
Disruption, business model change, technological transformation is real, and so you have a simple choice: innovate, or die.