Disruptive innovation happens when someone creates something that is simple and convenient, more so than its sustained counterpart. Managers, CEOs, innovators, etc. look for almost an invisible market of people who have various needs that they may not even be able to articulate (Harvard Business Review, 2008). When these people and needs have been identified, the innovation that makes their lives more efficient and in a less expensive way is created. It is different than sustaining innovation because it doesn’t have to be a major technological breakthrough. Rather, it is the business model that creates the major change that ends up disrupting the marking and creating this catalyst for change (Harvard Business Review, 2008).
The most interesting example that Scott Anthony, a blogger for Harvard’s “Innovation Insights” blog, provides is Playstation vs. Wii. He explained that the market for gamers created a platform for Sony to create a really intense gaming system in the Playstation 3 (and now, I’m sure, the 4). However, there was a market that Nintendo seemed to have create out of thin air—the non-gamer, gamer. In this market, Ninendo wanted to reach the group of people who felt overwhelmed by the idea of a Playstation’s intricacies but would enjoy playing something more simple (and affordable!) as the Wii. It was a major success and completely disrupted the market (Harvard Buisness Review, 2008). Other examples include the iPad, Skype, Netflix, and Pandora, all of which were created to enable more people to access pretty high tech items in a simpler fashion (White).
Watching these videos and reading about disruptive innovation has intrigued me, and I started to think about what we could do in our classrooms and buildings to “disrupt” education and our usual market (students and parents). I don’t know that I have an answer yet… I have the feeling that is what we are going to be figuring out in this course! But I do know that I have a million ideas running through my head, and a many of them have to do with the fact that school is no longer a place where we need to teach students facts, but they do need to learn skills. I am now wondering to myself, what kinds of disruptive innovation technologies would help with that new daunting task? What can we create or provide students with so that their time here is more efficient and simpler? I guess I will be finding out soon!
Harvard Buisness Review. (2008, October 20). How To Stop Disruptive Innovation Opportunities [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KGzXWO_anLI
White, Charlie. “7 Disruptive Innovations That Turned Their Markets Upside Down.” 2011, October 9. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2011/10/09/2-disruptiveinnovations/#hmfk1nTqk8qJ. April 11, 2016