Disruptive innovation: understand the concept and how to apply it in your corporation

100 Open Startups
3 min readFeb 7, 2023


See what the concept of disruptive innovation represents and check out six tips to get your ideas off the ground

A corporation, when adopting the open innovation strategy, will come across some other concepts that complement open innovation. This range of concepts, which, in practice, represent actions, plans and metrics, are essential for innovative processes to continue to evolve. One of these complementary concepts is that of disruptive innovation.

Within the corporate universe, based on new market demands, innovations need to follow differentiated creation processes . Thus, disruptive innovation assumes a great role: that of escaping the pattern, of creating something totally new for the market, of changing the direction of an industry.

Understand what disruptive innovation is

Disruptive innovation is the process by which a new corporation or technology emerges and becomes dominant in an established market, often changing the rules of the game. This can happen in many ways, such as introducing a cheaper, easier to use, or more accessible product or service.

One of the most famous stories of disruptive innovation is that of the technology company Apple and its impact on the music market. With the launch of the iPod and iTunes, Apple changed the way people bought and listened to music, making the process easier and more accessible. This led to the downfall of music sellers on CDs and later the rise of music streaming .

Another example is Pix , an instant payment system launched at the end of 2020, which simplified, streamlined and made money transfers free, greatly reducing the use of conventional methods such as DOC, TED, bank slips and, in many cases, replacing the own use of credit or debit card for purchases.

It is important to note that disruptive innovation is not necessarily good or bad, it simply changes the rules of the game and can have a significant impact on the way things are done. Furthermore, established corporations may struggle to compete with new companies or disruptive technologies as they may be too deeply rooted in their old practices.

6 steps to creating disruptive innovations

There are many ways to craft disruptive innovations, but some general tips include:

Identify problems and unmet needs: It is important to be aware of customer problems and needs that are not yet being met by existing companies. This can include common problems or needs that people don’t even know they have.

Think outside the box: To create something truly disruptive, it’s important to think outside the box and look at things differently. This could include combining existing technologies in innovative ways, or applying a technology from another industry to yours.

Follow technology trends: It ‘s important to be aware of emerging technology trends and how they might apply to your industry. This could include artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things or blockchain, for example.

Test and Validate: It ‘s important to test and validate your idea before investing time and money in its implementation. This could include conducting market research, creating prototypes, or conducting tests with potential customers.

Be an active part of the innovation ecosystem: Within the ecosystem, you have the opportunity to benchmark with innovation leaders from other corporations, who may have gone through situations similar to yours. In addition, within the ecosystem are the leading innovation startups. With them, the possibilities of co-creating disruptive solutions are greatly expanded. Harnessing the power of the network to understand, connect, learn about solutions and bring them to your everyday life is a very rich process.

Constant training: corporate education, based on the concepts of Lifelong Learning and Lifelong Connected , is essential. It is based on network training that you will be prepared for the challenges of the market, broaden your perspective, and learn to identify and solve your customers’ pain points.

Remember that disruptive innovation can be uncertain, and there is no guarantee of success, but by following these tips and having an open and innovative mindset, the chances of success will increase.