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Innovator's Toolkit: 10 Practical Strategies to Help You Develop and Implement Innovation by Harvard Business School Press

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8

The S-Curve and Its Strategic Lessons

What Curve Are You On?

Key Topics Covered in This Chapter

  • The S-curve concept
  • Lesson’s from the S-curve for innovators
  • Cautions in using the S-curve

AS DESCRIBED IN chapters 1 and 2, incremental innovation that leverages or adapts a company’s core technology is a safer and more predictable approach to keeping the cash registers ringing than is its radical counterpart. However, as the old saying goes, “every dog has his day,” and many technologies eventually lose their competitive power and revenuegenerating potency. Technologies (and services), like living things, produce cycles of growth and maturity; and as human needs change, or when new technologies emerge that satisfy need more effectively, those ...

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