What do the dinosaur’s extinction and the Eurozone Debt Crisis have in common?

Breaking news (The Sunday Times) – Professor Graeme Ruxton reported dinosaur flatulence, from their roughly digested 500kg of ferns a day diet, produced thousands of litres of toxic methane every day. During the 185m years of their existence on earth, dinosaurs arguably created more planet-busting gas than all modern-day sources put together. That’s not only down to the many millions of tons of methane they created but because methane is 21x more potent than manmade C02 as a greenhouse gas. The gentle wind of destruction delivered by the dinosaurs put the pollutant follies of recent generations into perspective.

What wiped out the dinosaurs; An asteroid strike? An upsurge in volcanic activity? Or did the dinosaurs just fart themselves to extinction?

And of course the key question we all ask ourselves with the self-satisfying reassurance of hindsight, Why didn’t they see it coming? Why did the dinosaurs not have any strategic incite to provoke a change of diet?

Moving forward several hundred million years, for example of the 46 businesses we have just reviewed; 50% are STILL just riding a market trend BUT still only 21% businesses are adapting their business models to suit their environments:

  • 50%; market trend                          (KFC, Greggs, Direct Golf, Ted Baker, Morgan Motors Co Ltd)
  • 21%; effective business model  (Next plc, Rightmove Plc, Marks and Spencers)
  • 21%; innovation                                (Zenith Vehicle Contracts, Gamesa Energy, IOMART Group Plc)
  • 8% M&A…                                           (Johnson Service Group Plc, Autoholdings Plc)

At the same time, declines also seem to have been caused by an inability to change the business model:

  • 88% ineffective business model                (Telegraph Media, Easyjet, HMV Group, Kerry Ingredients)
  • only 13% management failure. (Cocosa Lifestyle Limited)

Human behaviour is still largely driven by the very same fear of being eaten that was engendered in us when our ancestors were faced with the challenge of surviving alongside Dinosaur like man eating creatures… This very same fear is still rooted in us and still limits our behaviour today; so there is a chance that we may not have developed that much in our ability to recognise how to change – in particular to take advantage of the even faster changing markets we operate in? Who of us are we really able to change or leverage innovation to stay ahead?

The common threats we find from our recent experience is; out of date business models, defunct market strategies, and inability to leverage innovation. Maybe not much has changed in our ability to adapt?

If you fancy a “whiff of fresh air” – get in contact, we would be delighted to speak to you