The UNITE Innovation & Transformation Models - Average Life Expectancy Of S&P 500 Companies.

A visual depiction of the decreasing lifes expectancy of companies based on data from Standard and Poor’s.
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  • Average life expectancy of S&P 500 companies

Understand how the lifespan of companies has decreased based on reliable financial data

A glimpse into the future: how will the lifespan likely evolve in the next years?

Consider and discuss the effects on your organization

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Richard Cobie, CEO

Reviewed on 15 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

I completely re-evaluated the role of innovation in business growth: before reading this book I have to admit I thought it only entailed product new features and technologies enhancements, while now I see it has everything to do with meeting customer needs and uncovering a business USP, which automatically translates in sales! Could not recommend it more!

Janette Lavalier, Innovation Professor and Consultant

Reviewed on 15 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

Unlike most business innovation books I read over the last years (and even decades) when reading How to create innovation you immediately understand the authors have been there, innovating and transforming some of the world's most amazing brands. Great work!

Karl Meckel, Change Development Manager

Reviewed on 18 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

Not only this book offers the most comprehensive innovation and business change overview but it really helps you take the next step, driving you step by step from theory to practice (also with super useful background notes and driving questions)

Franz Hellstrom, Head of Culture

Reviewed on 2 Aug 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

I really enjoyed the whole book, but mostly the culture chapter, mainly because I always failed to acknowledge its major role in favouring or inhibiting business growth. Loved the graphics that helped connect all the dots in a visually appealing (and way easier) way.

Satoru Fukuda, Chief Strategy Officer

Reviewed on 13 Aug 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

We’been willing to innovate our business for some years now, but then we always got stuck before we even started, because basically we had no idea where to start…This book helped us do just that: find the right starting point with guiding questions and an incredibly comprehensive innovation overview.

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Why we use it

The average lifespan of companies has been falling dramatically over the past 100 years. Both external and internal factors are fueling this change. Understanding this fact clarifies the need for a company to continually reinvent itself.

How It Works

In the past, companies lasted for a human lifetime. By 1964, the average life expectancy of a company on the S&P 500 had fallen to 33 years. By 2014 it had shrunk to 22 years, and it is supposed to fall to 12 by 2027.
This means that we can no longer plan in ten-year blocks. As technology accelerates, your company needs to be thinking about how to continually look for opportunities for growth and innovation. This may mean moving into adjacent fields or spinning off a separate company to fulfill a customer’s unmet need. Or it may mean taking a hard look at your business and thinking about how you can disrupt yourself. Regardless, you don’t have the option of resting on your laurels. If you want to survive, you’ve got to keep moving.

What is the goal of the model?

“Understanding that the life expectancy of companies is falling dramatically is just the first step”. The biggest driver of this shortening lifespan is technological disruption which is expected to further accelerate.

That means you can no longer optimize your business and put it on autopilot. You need to reinvent yourself every decade, if not sooner. The best way to achieve this is to use the 3 Horizons of Growth as a framework, conduct portfolio allocation based on the 3 Horizons, and take bold steps to start on a continuous journey of transformation and innovation.

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