Disrupt This: How Entrepreneur is Walking the Walk When It Comes to Innovation
Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.
—George Bernard Shaw
Disruption is something we write about every month. It’s the force we stand for, and it’s what we advocate with every story. But it’s not enough to simply talk about these ideas. We need to be part of them. So we’ve decided to turn our pages—our design, our style and our culture at large—into a lab for change and innovation.
By disrupting ourselves and our logo and everything we have ever represented, we stand next to you, as one with you. It’s our riskiest move to date.
So, welcome to our new look and feel. Welcome to us being one of you. We’re not just preaching, we’re doing. Just like you.
We took some risks. And it was a little bit scary. The changes are obvious at first glance. For so long we have been told: Present yourselves as a business magazine. Design as if you were designing for The Economist. No. We are not, and we never will be. The way we see it, we are more than a business magazine—we are the intersection of culture, entrepreneurship and life. That’s what we want to be, and that’s what we hope our new look represents.
So welcome to the new Entrepreneur. We may fail. We may succeed. Our logo may cause a commotion. Guess what? That’s the point. That’s disruption. We took the risk to stand alongside your journey toward change, because we believe in what you are doing, and we want to be a part of it. Because together, we represent the future of our economy and our culture.
Change isn’t easy. As we learned through this redesign process, there are hard days, budgetary constraints, disagreements and hurt feelings and times when you ask yourself why you started this crazy undertaking at all. When you wish you had just played it safe and were doing something, anything, else. But you keep at it, because what you are doing is not just important—it may be your legacy. And if it were easy, everyone would be doing it.
Let me remind you, 30 years ago the word entrepreneurship meant something totally different than it does today. To be entrepreneurial once meant selling snake oil. It meant some sort of trickery. It meant that you did not have a job.
But the years have been generous to the idea of entrepreneurship. It now stands for character, risk and innovation. It is now about living the dream. It is more than being your own boss. It is about creating something that will change the course of history.
So for this inaugural issue, we chose a couple of unorthodox topics. We took a look at one of the world’s oldest industries—winemaking—and how one venerable Napa Valley producer, Silver Oak, is turning to new technology to upend time-honored traditions and processes on its way to award-winning cabernets.
Another iconoclast, will.i.am, takes on the topic of innovation with his audacious gamble into the world of smart watches. You may have known that he has successfully bridged the worlds of entertainment and entrepreneurship by turning his band, Black Eyed Peas, into a lucrative brand. But did you know that he is a palm tree?
And, as part of our new world perspective, we have decided to take our own 360-degree view of business. It’s a look at the types of companies, leaders, personalities, cultures and operations that perform best—and, more important, why they perform. Whichever type you are, you should find lessons, takeaways and hints to building a more sustainable company—one that will keep on disrupting for years to come.
The bottom line, as always, is this: We celebrate you, we support you and we believe in you. Even on your roughest day, we’re right there with you. And so is will.i.am. We think, but we’re not sure.