Summary of Doing It Right : Winning with New Products Essay

This paper examines the two ways to win at product innovation: doing projects right and doing the right projects. Dr. Cooper explores the critical success factors that make the difference between winning and losing at innovation. He outlines key success components of the authentic Stage-Gate system and the four goals of successful portfolio management. Increasingly innovation which leads to new products has become a major chunk of profits for companies. This can be due to globalization and changing marketing scenario.

The companies that fail to innovate have huge consequences Not only does the product fail, but the market value also comes down due to its effect on stock.

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There are some critical factors that differentiate winners form losers. The key factors in delivering a successful new product is to differentiate your product from other products which will satisfy the needs and wants of the customer and provide them with superior quality product. Lack of time spent on doing market research vis a vis spent on its development.

Being able to use the customers inputs not just for validation but also integrate them as designers. This will help in the buy-in from the customers. Market planning is an integral part of new product process. It should be planned early, and not done as an after thought and ability to have regular check points to monitor if the project is going on the right track . This helps in ensuring that resources are expended judiciously Project teams play a huge role . One commonly cause for a badly done project is the team structure.

The recommended structures are : Project matrix, balanced matrix and project team Probability of success of a product can be increased by leveraging the companies core products. Approaching the product development in a global manner. Appeal not just to domestic , but also to global customers. Last but not the least , support from management , not just in terms of resources but also a part of its long term plan. Stage gate is blue print for a product to move from its conceptual stage to launch phase.

There are series of steps which act like monitor points to decide to go further or backtrack to improve. There are five key stages: Scoping to outline the project boundaries ,thorough market research and its rationale to map into business plan, also laying the next steps ,design and development of the product, giving the ideas a shape;in this stage test plans and plans for next stage are also laid and then testing and validation is done and last stage is launching the product.

Apart from this method , there is another way of winning through right projects through portfolio management. Portfolio management in product development is about making the right investment decisions-about which projects and opportunities to say “Yes” to, and which to walk away from. In this the main objectives are to maximize the value of the portfolio by achieving the right balance and a strategically aligned portfolio and to choose the right number of projects that you can handle.

Product innovation is the result of bringing to life a new way to solve the customer’s problem – through a new product or service development – that benefits both the customer and the company. Therefore to successfully launch a new product, stage gate and portfolio management have to be used effectively.

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