In episode 74 of the Leadership Minute, Tony Uphoff explains why business leaders need to be prepared for, and embrace, change, particularly the kinds of disruptions generated by technology.
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00:14 — Tony cites the work of computer scientist Ray Kurzweil, who said that technological change accelerates every decade, meaning that in 20 years, the rate of change will be four times what it is today, and we will see 20,000 years of change this century. Dealing with change is a forcing function that requires a reaction, and how you react to change can be the difference between success and failure.
01:13 — Embracing change can dramatically alter the fortunes of companies and entire industries, says Tony. Business leaders must understand and prepare for the disruptive power of technology to thrive in periods of rapid transformation. From 2003 to 2007, Tony was president of CMP Media, which at that time owned The Hollywood Reporter. While there, Tony saw that the entertainment industry was about to be disrupted by technology and that it was totally unprepared for it.
02:11 — For example, video rental chain Blockbuster failed to recognize the impact of technological change and turned down an offer to buy Netflix. In 2005, streaming was not yet viable, but Netflix recognized that technological limitations would soon be overcome. By 2010, Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy while Netflix thrived. Failure to recognize changes taking place can lead to the disruption of entire industries.
04:11 — Business leaders must embrace change in order to survive and thrive in the face of accelerating technological progress. The current period of change is comparable to the latter part of the aughts, when technological advances ushered in a revolutionary series of changes in entertainment and most other industries.
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