Every small business owner is a risk-taker, but the ones who truly change the world are also disruptors. Lots of entrepreneurs react to trends instead of creating them because they're not willing to disrupt the current state of the industry or give up the payday that comes with proven business models.
Big examples of disruptors include TiVo (selling the ability to skip commercials shook up the way TV shows are made and funded) and Apple (MP3 players and mobile phones existed before iPods and iPhones, but Apple changed the way every other company thinks about those products).
But you don't have to be big to create the future. You don't even have to be an inventor. Just adopting a disruptive mindset can open up pathways that your competition never even dreamed of. Plus, you'll enjoy your work more because it will be more you. Here are the five ways that being a disruptor will improve your satisfaction with your work:
1. You will be excited to wake up in the morning.
Following the status quo isn't challenging. And if you weren't in it for a challenge, you'd have a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. job instead of running your own business. Waking up and wondering how you'll sell/design a product that's the same as the rest, only a little better, just isn't inspirational.
2. You will change the world! (Even if it's only in small ways... at first.)
If you don't follow trends, you could end up creating a whole new industry, business model or lifestyle. Many people will think you're nuts... until they can't remember how life was before your idea. There's room for radical ideas in every field. You may do something as small and specific as changing the way salon owners order products, or something as big as changing the way the whole nation cooks their food.
3. You can't go wrong...
People who assume the way things are now is the best way are wrong. Life is constantly evolving, and being a disruptor means you're the source of some of that evolution. So by being a part of the change, you can't be wrong since there is no "right" way doing things yet. Even when you fail or go off course, it will just be a step on your journey toward making a big change that will better things.
4. You will help people.
Followers can be successful with a bad idea by riding the coattails of a good idea. They're not helping anyone except themselves... and just in the short-term. But disruptors only succeed if they truly serve a need that isn't being served.
5. You will meet more 'interesting' people.
Some people will resent your innovative spirit. Most people will admire it and be interested to hear your story. Since you'll be fueled by creativity, you will seek out different types of people instead of sticking to the same old circle. Talk about finding a fun way to make your work help expand your horizons socially!
I suppose the real question now, is why wouldn't anyone want that rush every morning and potential to change the world? What will YOU disrupt?