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Firms invest in new products to ensure their ability to compete in the future.  When top management senses that the product innovation engine is performing below par, it is imperative that they initiate improvements.  Unfortunately, many executives, like the frog in hot water, have become so accustomed to problems and frustrated by elusive solutions that they simply accept the status quo. 


Product innovation improvements accelerate a firm toward its business goals.  Better new product results include not only improved financial ROI, but also reduced consumption of a critical resource: management energy.


When can I Help?

When executives recognize that accepting the status quo stands between them and their goals, they realize that an effective improvement program can provide a handsome payback.


Any of these situations can indicate an opportunity to improve product innovation:

  • Your programs stumble along while competitors dart ahead

  • Business cases are an exercise that no one really believes

  • Collaboration between executives and technologists is ineffective

  • Yesterday's management methods haven't scaled to today's operation

  • Investors want better financial oversight of new product investments

  • Programs don't stay on track despite constant resource juggling

  • Key technologists are disengaged or restless in their jobs

  • Customers refuse to believe new product schedules

Any of these symptoms indicate improvement opportunities.  If you've tried to improve, but haven't had much success, contact me to discuss how I can help.

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Improved Financial ROI

How much do you invest in new products, and what is the return on that investment?  How would your company's future look if you could improve new product ROI?


When managers first examine their new product engine, they commonly find opportunities to increase results by 20-30%.  Translated into cost savings, such outcomes quickly pay for the improvement program.  And executives who consider using productivity gains to accelerate growth instead of saving cost are often startled by the potential level of acceleration.


It's important to know that significant ROI improvements cannot be the sole responsibility of the engineering department.  Improving product innovation is a company-wide responsibility that is best directed by the the top management team, with the span of authority to drive company-wide changes.


Typical improvement opportunities include:

  • Better selection of product investments

  • More effective resource management focused on ROI

  • Improved capital allocation among product lines

  • Installing consistent and meaningful top to bottom metrics

  • More fluid company-wide collaboration to define opportunities

  • Increasing impact and reducing overhead of project management processes

  • Smoothing new product launches

I can help improve product innovation ROI beginning with envisioning improvements, designing changes and wide scale deployment.  Contact me to discuss your situation.

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Leveraging Management Time

It's hard to think about draining the swamp when you're fighting alligators all day.  A firm's product innovation effort can often get trapped the same vicious cycle:  So much management energy is spent on day-to-day issues, transactions, and crises that there is not enough time to prevent future problems with lasting system improvements.


Managers can make use of a consultant to leverage their time so they can improve tomorrow's operations without dropping the ball on today's issues.  My approach is to minimize demands on executives' time to understand the company and the issues, assess the current state of affairs, propose initiatives for executive decisions, and finally support the company in implementing the solutions.  Contact me to discuss draining the swamp.

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