Michael Porter’s five forces (video)

In several past posts related to additive manufacturing / 3D printing I mentioned Michael Porter’s five forces model, its real name being The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy. In this post, I pay credit to Mr Porter and let himself explain what the five forces are. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYF2_FBCvXw You may also like a brief video … Continue reading Michael Porter’s five forces (video)

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Lean in the digital age: free apps

Lean-educated people will consider value as something a customer is ready to pay for because the product or service has some value from his/her point of view. Lean-educated people will consider to use just-needed resources and avoid unnecessary storage. But what about free or almost free apps for smartphones and tablets? Do the Lean principles … Continue reading Lean in the digital age: free apps

Creativity breaks loose from constraints with additive manufacturing

New additive manufacturing technologies – let’s take 3D printing as symbol for them – are freeing designers from constraints that came with traditional manufacturing and the assembly methods. Additive manufacturing means adding layer of material after layer instead of cutting out material from a bigger raw chunk, allowing the design of complex and odd shapes … Continue reading Creativity breaks loose from constraints with additive manufacturing

3D Printing and Porter’s five forces – opportunities

In a previous post on this topic I highlighted the threats of 3D printing – as symbol of any additive manufacturing technology – disrupting traditional businesses, wondering if threatened business owners and professionals are aware of it. In this post I’ll take the opposite point of view, as a challenger to established businesses, breaking the … Continue reading 3D Printing and Porter’s five forces – opportunities

How lean can help shaping the future? Introduction

Lean, no doubt, is a powerful proven business management system with long track record of success stories (and probably as many failed attempts). In 60 years, Lean made it slowly from Lean Manufacturing to Lean Thinking and Lean Management, from small improvement experiments in industrial workshops to worldwide shared Body of Knowledge. Despite all the … Continue reading How lean can help shaping the future? Introduction

How disruptive 3D printing can be

In the early days of 2014 there is none without announcement of new amazing possibilities offered by 3D printing. The new additive manufacturing techniques - adding material layer by layer - are accessible to a growing number of players to ever lower costs and with increasingly diverse materials. The new possibilities are both exciting and … Continue reading How disruptive 3D printing can be

Want to avoid disruption? Then keep exploring

Barry O'Reilly

Article for The Economist Insights

Want to avoid disruption? Then keep exploring Want to avoid disruption? Then keep exploring

Businesses have always come and gone, but these days it seems that companies can fall from market dominance to bankruptcy in the blink of an eye. Kodak, Blockbuster and HMV are just a few recent victims of the rapid market disruption that defines the current era.

Where did these once iconic companies go wrong? To my mind, they forgot to keep challenging their assumptions about what business they were actually in.

Businesses have two options when they plan for the road ahead: they can put all their eggs into one basket, and risk losing everything if that basket has a hole in the bottom, or they can make a number of small bets, accepting that some will fail while others succeed.

Taking the latter approach, and making many small bets on innovation, transforms the boardroom into a roulette…

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