Matt Harris, partner at Bain Capital Ventures, and Michael Tae, corporate vice president and head of strategy at Broadridge, look back on two recent crises for lessons on how disruption can lead to rapid change, opportunity and a new status quo, with an eye towards what might be post-Covid.
The suggestion that every crisis also brings an opportunity has been attributed to everyone from Einstein to Churchill to JFK. But perhaps nobody understands this phenomenon better than Mother Nature.
Take the 140-year-old tiny aquatic invertebrate, the bryozoan, which remained exactly the same for 40 million years and then suddenly experienced a vast diversification – perhaps a result of an abrupt change in sea levels or atmospheric temperature – followed by millions more years in stasis. The bryozoan illustrates the scientific principle of punctuated equilibrium, proposed by natural historians Niles Eldredge and Stephen Jay Gould to describe how a long-standing,