In his recent book, Unlocking the Customer Value Chain, Teixeira examines the myth that innovation should be focused on technology disruption because new technology companies are replacing traditional ones (think Facebook, Google and Amazon). His argument is that “…new technology isn’t driving more disruption today. Consumers are.”(p.2).” He believes, based on his research, that innovation comes from new business models focused on the needs of the customers, what he calls “their value chain”, and the disruptions provide new and better answers to some of the steps and activities required by a customer to be satisfied. Technology helps make the new value chain possible, but is not in itself creating a new value chain.
The success of this approach is based on “decoupling.” Companies create new ways for consumers to access what they need while not being involved in every step by breaking the standard steps of the value chain (evaluate, choose, purchase, and consume). For instance, Facebook does not provide news content but allows its dissemination, Amazon does not have a physical store to get products but allows you to buy them online, Uber makes it possible for you to go somewhere without owning a car…Innovative companies find new ways to “decouple” and “recouple” to provide better answers to consumers.
Teixera’s lens on innovation is a great way to better understand innovation and to provide new opportunities for your organization to innovate. Because in the end, it is not about being aggressive against your competitors or new technology, it is about “go(ing) back to what you know, to what really matters — business and customers” (p.274)