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Enabling Disruption with Perceptive Products

To disrupt is to create a new basis of competition. Doing that means fixing market frictions not just at the levels of Needs or Expectations but Perceptions. Explaining this nexus since I wrote it in 2012 in Harvard Business Review is a key component of any workshop I have managed. It is at the heart of the elemental construct of innovation.

You (an environmental activist) live in Enugu (Nigeria) and you want electricity – if a DISCO provides you one via coal; they have met your Need. But if any another company comes with solar and gives you same electricity on the same rate, they have met your Expectation. To move from Expectation to Perception, it is when you have products you never imagined are possible but once you see them, you go for them. The iPhone and Diamond Bank’s DIBS belong to this category.

In this piece, Chimdi Joseph, writing on my blog Tekedia postulates HOW TO design perceptive products. His lines:

“Its focus is not on market niche but to dominate a behavioral niche; such that the consumer depends on it to express such behavior!”


“The general idea proposed by each process is a shift in focus from not just understanding the market but the Consumer at a deep level!”

Take a look here.