The world’s cheapest car is a Tata Nano. It is the brainchild of Ratan Tata, chairman of India’s Tata Group. One day in 2003, Tata was in Mumbai, India, when he noticed a man riding a scooter in the rain. The man’s older son was standing in the front part of the scooter behind the handlebars. The man’s wife sat sideways on the back of the scooter, with a small child in her lap. All four were drenched by the rain. Although Tata had witnessed this scene countless times before, this time it led him to produce a $2,200 car that lower middle-class people—or those who could buy a scooter but not a car—could afford. If you want to be an innovative disruptor, you will need to start looking at the world around you differently. You should LOOK at what EVERYBODY else is looking at and SEE what NOBODY else sees. This is the essence of disruptive innovation.
A few lessons:
1. Observation is the bedrock of innovation
2. Many eyes look, few eyes see
3. Opportunity sometimes comes dressed as a problem