Those that come closest are the ones that constantly reinvent themselves before their business models become obsolete. This need for reinvention is more pressing than ever. 60 years ago, the average lifespan of a company listed in the S&P 500 index was 50 years, today, it is 15 years. By 2027, the average company could last just 12 years on the S&P 500.
Failure of companies to reinvent themselves, leading to traditional cost-cutting measures, comes at a high cost for employees and society as a whole. This is why we wrote The Invincible Company. To propose a different path, the path followed by companies chasing invincibility. We have spent the last two years conducting extensive research to understand why certain companies have been able to create immensely successful businesses, disrupt entire industries and survive disruption themselves. At the core of their success we identified three critical attributes:
1. They build a capability for constant reinvention
To stay ahead of everybody else and beat disruption Invincible Companies constantly reinvent themselves by exploring a portfolio of new business ideas.
2. They compete on superior business models
Invincible Companies compete on superior business models, not just product, service, technology or price.
3. They transcend industry boundaries
Invincible Companies are increasingly able to transcend traditional industry boundaries.
In The Invincible Company, we draw lessons from 50+ case studies from the world’s most innovative companies and demonstrate how any organization can become unstoppable by managing a portfolio of existing businesses while simultaneously exploring a pipeline of potential new growth engines.
This article is an adapted excerpt of a chapter in our upcoming book: The Invincible Company.