Today, major direct-to-consumer companies (think Warby Parker, Dollar Shave Club, and Casper) have evolved the disruption playbook — entering the market with products and services that are cheap, convenient, and high quality. This combination of “just as good” with new digital technologies is making it harder than ever for traditional businesses to compete.
When it comes to running AI businesses, it’s easy to think that AI is a continuation of software — and that AI companies will run like software companies. But the comparison isn’t quite there. This article, authored by two partners at venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, looks at the different economic constructions at play — including why margins are lower than expected and how scale will be an issue.
Disruption isn’t always the right strategy for startups. It’s a choice. Joshua Gans, professor at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto looks at how to make that decision.
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The U.S. Competitiveness Project surveys alumni of Harvard Business School to understand how business leaders are seeing trendlines for competitiveness in the global marketplace. The latest study reflects a larger underlying problem of political gridlock — and the numbers are less than optimistic. Forty-eight percent of alumni expect U.S. competitiveness to decline over the next three years, while 68% of alumni believe that American democracy is at risk.
With real-time locating systems, managers can pinpoint the precise whereabouts of every asset down to the centimeter. Used wisely, location information can protect assets and fix business problems. But to make the most of these new technologies, companies need to adjust for agility.
What Else We’re Reading This Week:
- Have offices become obsolete?
- Can we escape the “technology trap”?
- Eleven types of unconscious bias that impact decisions (and how to interrupt them)
Quote of the Week
“This new [digital native] talent needs autonomy and ownership from an early stage. Stretch goals that push their learning and development can keep them engaged and challenged. And when they succeed, they need a clear career path that allows them to progress as quickly as their talent allows. For corporations, this means having not only clear career paths in place but also new ways of managing and distributing work.”
— Alice Bentinck, cofounder of Entrepreneur First, in “The People-First Approach to Business Building”