What sets us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom? Well, there are many things, of course. But there’s one thing that has undeniably propelled us forward over the years: Technology.
But what is technology, really?
You could say that technology exists to solve everyday problems more effectively and efficiently. It’s one of the most powerful tools in our arsenal. And with each technological leap, there comes an inflection point in the markets. In other words, new ways of solving problems emerge.
And you know what the best part is?
You don’t have to be the one who invents the technology. You can simply observe the advancements and capitalize on them. For instance, I didn’t invent the software that allows me to post this article. I pay a yearly subscription to use it, and it enables us to communicate with you. Just like I didn’t invent WordPress; I use it to create content.
Pause for a moment and think about this—it’s deeper than it seems. Do you think Elon Musk invented the electric batteries for Teslas? Do you think Jeff Bezos invented the internet? No.
They simply spotted technological inflections and decided to create more efficient solutions to age-old problems. Therefore, the first inflection we should pay attention to is the technological one. Every time technological advancements occur, the opportunity to create new ventures emerges. But…
If this is the case, why aren’t large companies the first ones to seize the opportunity and create solutions using new technologies? Because innovating for a large company is extremely complicated. They have a lot at stake. They need to show financial results, pay bills, manage employees’ salaries.
An entrepreneur doesn’t have all that. They only risk their time and the initial capital it takes to start. And the new markets created by technological inflections start small and might not seem very lucrative.
Let’s look at an example.
Borders bookstores is the largest bookstore chain in the United States. Shouldn’t they have been the ones to create the biggest online bookstore? Of course not. When Amazon started selling books online, the market was minuscule. Not only that, Borders bookstores had hundreds of physical stores all over the United States. Investing in online sales would have threatened their own business.
But this is good news for entrepreneurs. Large companies will always give you an initial advantage.
Let’s bring this concept down to earth:
You don’t need to invent the technology to benefit from it. Technology creates new ways to solve existing problems. In the beginning, established companies often overlook these new markets.