Disruption happens at the moment of pain
As consumers, how often do we endure pain or challenge just to buy something? Think about buying a mattress, or a car, ordering a taxi, finding a hotel, getting the right eyeglasses. Purchasing all of these items or services have an intrinsic pain to them. We have been forced to jump through unnecessary hoops, endure awkward situations and feel slighted with every decision. These moments of pain are created by companies that have decided to make it easier on them to sell something than making it easier on the consumer to buy.
And in these moments of pain, we are seeing the most disruption.
Casper didn’t make a better mattress. They created a better buying experience.
TrueCar doesn’t sell better cars. They made a more transparent and less awkward shopping experience.
Uber didn’t build a different taxi system. They enabled it with a better hailing process.
Warby Parker didn’t reinvent eyewear. They built a vertically-integrated and design-driven brand that made finding the right pair of glasses easy, cool and at a lower cost.
All of these companies were focused on solving the consumer pain points that have been created from years of silo’d decision making and company focus over consumer focus. The fact is that these disruptive companies are dedicated to human-centered design, where each decision a company makes revolves around the consumer. From product, to service to experience, human-centered design keeps the process of innovation and disruption continuously flowing through an organization.
Looking back at the value propositions of these companies and we wonder why the traditional incumbents didn’t create these innovations. As the legendary Clayton Christensen said “The reason why it is so difficult for existing firms to capitalize on disruptive innovations is that their processes and their business model that make them good at the existing business actually make them bad at competing for the disruption.
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