Preface to the Second Edition: Better to be the Disrupter than the Disrupted

“Don’t wait for a couple of guys in a garage to come up with an idea that will upend your business.”

—Linda Tischler, Fast Company1

Throughout the 1990s, Blockbuster mowed down its competitors in the video rental business by stocking a nearly unlimited number of copies of the latest Hollywood releases and using sophisticated inventory management systems that small rental stores couldn’t match. Then in 2000—in what has since gone down in the history of corporate America as one of the biggest missed opportunities of all time—three guys pitched Blockbuster a crazy DVD-by-mail idea that eliminated late fees. They wanted $50 million, but Blockbuster literally laughed them ...

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