Digital Disruptor

A fellow disruptor, with research

Matt Berger Nov 22, 2011

My new digital disruption beat has quickly led me to some interesting research on the topic of industries disrupted by technology. You know, like the U.S. Postal Service, the brick and mortar book store, video rentals, film processing shops, porn. And those are just the ones that quickly come to mind.

Despite the recent great changes to way we live and do businessbrought on by Internet and digital technologies, the research suggests that while most people know their industry will be disrupted, most are not yet ready to adapt to those disruptions. This is according to James McQuivey over at Forrester Research in Cambridge Mass.

McQuivey studies disruptive technologies and the industries they disrupt, and is the author of a recent report called “The Disruptor’s Handbook.” The hefty download fee of $499 prevented me from reading up on that handbook, but McQuivey’s free blog had some interesting highlights from his online survey. It found that “…76% see ‘significant opportunity’ for digital to disrupt the industry they serve. Yet only a third think their companies will put the right resources in place to adapt to the changes that digital will bring.”

That’s an important thing to think about if you’re unemployed and having a hard time finding work in your old industry, or a long-time business owner competing againt an internet startup, or a high-school senior getting ready to go to college. So, consider this another reminder, because there’s research to prove it.

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