Music to our ears

Being of a generation that grew up with vinyl and hi-fi systems, I grieve the loss of all those record shops and the happy hours spent reorganising my collection. But I have recently become something of a convert to music streaming, and can see plenty of advantages. When researching subjects for my series of lectures on Leadership, Teambuilding and Managerial Creativity, I came across the story of Daniel Ek and Spotify, which makes for fascinating reading.

Image © Peter Town

Although Apple, with its iTunes app, had already turned the music industry on its head by selling music in a completely different way, Ek’s vision was to provide music for free. Funded by paid advertising, Spotify aims to offer users the concept of having ‘all the world’s music on their hard drive’, at no cost. If users prefer to listen without ads, they can upgrade to a monthly subscription model. What makes Ek extra special, in my eyes, is that he claims to have known nothing about the music business when he started out. What he had was extraordinary vision and determination, and it has paid off in spades. A little knowledge may be a dangerous thing, but no knowledge, I believe, can be the secret of success.

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