In Ernest Hemingway’s novel The Sun Also Rises you will find a dialog between two characters which goes like this:
“How did you go bankrupt?” Bill asked “Two ways,” Mike said. “Gradually and then suddenly.”
Gradually and then suddenly might be one of the most profound insights into how disruption happens today: First you cannot see nor feel it. The first smartphones were undoubtedly impressive, but they did not kick a massive dent into the universe – until the iPhone and later Android phones came out and suddenly shifted the equation.
It is a profound lesson for everyone who is in a legacy business (and make no mistake – most businesses can be considered legacy businesses these days) and a good motivator for those of us who are ahead of the curve.