It’s a cliché to say that the world is more uncertain than ever before, but few realize just how much uncertainty has increased over the past 50 years.
To illustrate this, consider that patent applications in the U.S. have increased by 6x (from 100k to 600k annually) and, worldwide, start-ups have increased from 10 million to almost 100 million per year.
That means new technologies and new competitors are hitting the market at an unprecedented rate. Although uncertainty is accelerating, it isn’t affecting all industries the same way.
That’s because there are two primary types of uncertainty — demand uncertainty (will customers buy your product?) and technological uncertainty(can we make a desirable solution?) — and how much uncertainty your industry faces depends on the interaction of the two.