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The Establishment and the Disruptor

The establishment believes that you need a taxi to transport you from point A to point B. The establishment thinks you should wait on the curb with your hand held up as taxis fly by, hoping against hope that one will pick you up. The establishment believes you don’t care about the quality of the vehicle or the experience and that you won’t pay more for something better.

The disruptor believes that you want something better and that you will gladly pay for it. The disruptor believes that transportation can be better.

The establishment believes that they should determine what you watch. They believe that they should vet the television programs and movies that are produced. They think they should control, music, film, literature, and journalism. They believe that they alone know whose art deserves to be made and whose doesn’t. The establishment holds that they need to approve your demo before you can produce and publish the song in your heart. They believe you need a book proposal before you can write, that they must “green light” your project.

The disruptor believes that their art is worth making. The disruptor believes that there are no gatekeepers and that no one has the right to approve or prevent them from sharing their work in the open market. Some disrupters understand that they should enable the artist to create and share their work.

The establishment protects and defends the status quo. They stand on tradition. They like to do things “they way things have always been done.” They want to hold onto to their power, even though power is an illusion; it’s impermanent. The establishment is about permanence. They believe in sustainable competitive advantage and companies that are built to last.

The disruptor destroys the status quo. They recognize when values shift and move first and fastest. The disrupter does things in a new way. They believe in right now. And when the disrupter’s “revolution evaporates and leaves behind the slime of a new bureaucracy,” the disrupter tears it down and begins again.

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Filed under: Beliefs, The Disruptive Age

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