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Over the past few years, lots of really big companies have been blindsided by concepts, competitors and market forces that, with all their millions of dollars and thousands of really smart employees, never seemed to see coming. But you have nothing to worry about – you personally that is…

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By now you know most of the story….AOL was one of the biggest media companies in the world…but never saw broadband coming…

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Blockbuster, at one time was prevented from merging with Hollywood Video by the far-sighted bureaucrats that run the anti-trust division at Justice because the two companies would have constituted a monopoly – – – of course they now monopolize the out-of-business sector so popular with many of today’s businesses – or I should say, yesterday’s business. The point is, Blockbuster never saw Netflix coming….

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Then, there’s Netflix, which never saw itself coming and proceeded to shoot itself in the foot, not once, but now twice – Forbes has a good write up here.

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Then there’s our old pals from Redmond, Microsoft – who worked on tablet software for 9 years, only to see Apple sneak up and do a Jobs on another market sector – and there’s not a snoball’s chance in Phoenix that anyone would willingly select a Windows tablet over an iPod – and the difference is so glaring that not even the dweebs in IT can force users off the Apple platform  – – Microsoft never saw that coming.

So the big question, (I was going to make this point about ERP software, but I see it has broader applications…so to speak) – the big question is What is it that you don’t see coming?

I’m talking about your company, your technology, your job – nothing’s static anymore – unless you’re planning the next category killer, someone’s coming in right behind you – think about it – you don’t believe Microsoft was adding a couple of incremental changes to those goofy Windows tablets every quarter? (The IT dweebs where I worked in 2006 issued me an Acer laptop which swiveled into a tablet back in about 2006 – I don’t think I ‘swiveled’ it more than twice – but I only used it at work and really let out a sigh of relief every time I hit the home office and fired up the Mac).

So I don’t think incremental improvements will do it.

It’s reinvention time – it really always has been – no wonder we don’t see these changes coming, no one has time to look behind them.

Contact gene@genehammons.com

Disclaimer – any and all typos are the direct cause of a superfluous touchpad feature on a cheap Dell laptop I’m using til I can get over to the Apple Store and get a new iPad and wireless keyboard. I’ve had an entire IT department and full web search and found that no one on the internet has been able to disable this ridiculous encumbrance.