This blog is all about making product developers, managers, and innovators more successful and their organizations successful with them. As I do each week, below is a roundup of articles around the web with insightful product development, management, and innovation practices, tips, and examples – and sometimes controversial ideas.
Around the Web
Marketing innovation Oreo style – interview with Oreo’s brand leader. “How does a brand that’s part of a multi-billion-dollar corporation continuously innovate its marketing activities? I recently posed that and other questions Janda Lukin, vice president and brand leader for Oreos.” Read more from Forbes http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnellett/2014/09/26/how-a-risk-taking-culture-enables-oreos-marketing-innovation/
6 tips for product managers based on the best product managers at Google. “Alright, I’ll give this a shot based on my experience working at Google with the best product managers I’ve ever seen anywhere.” Read more from Time http://time.com/3453602/google-product-manager/
Use empathy maps to create qualitative interview guides for market research. “The empathy map can be used as an interview guide to find out what participants see, hear, think and feel, say and do along with the key pain points and their idea of success.” Read more from John Latham http://johnlatham.me/developing-theory-empathy-maps/
Product managers (and rest of us), stop wasting time! “All of us seem to feel as though we don’t have enough time, but few of us consider that we’re indulging in behaviors that suck up our time for no possible purpose. Here are 10 common time wasters that we can all live without…”
Read more from Inc. http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/10-huge-time-wasters-that-you-can-do-without.html
Want a more innovative organization? Create a common language. “A common language of innovation is the foundation of any sustainable innovation effort and is realized by putting these five building blocks in place…” Read more from Innovation Excellence http://www.innovationexcellence.com/blog/2014/09/28/creating-a-common-language-of-innovation/
More evidence that innovation is collaboration – new book Collective Genius. “Aha moments are overhyped—innovation is often a messy process of articulating, rejecting, marrying and testing multiple ideas with contributions from many people. In Collective Genius: The Art And Practice Of Leading Innovation, authors Linda A. Hill, Greg Brandeau, Emily Truelove and Kent Lineback give examples from companies like Pixar Animation Studios, HCL Technologies and Volkswagen to show how several smart people and genius ideas come together for creative problem-solving and innovation within the organization.” Read more from WSJ Mint http://www.livemint.com/Leisure/ZRTiiQKoPh9w19hSMdfpWN/Innovation-is-a-collaborative-effort.html
Listen to your customers + 4 other steps for a successful product. “’The best products are those that address a customer pain point [and] clearly communicate how inefficient or clunky current processes or solutions are,’ said Mary Kay Hyde, senior director of marketing at restaurant management software Red Book Connect.” Read more from Business News Daily http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/7210-first-product-tips.html
Looking for funding for your idea? 5 things Goldman Sachs Looks for. “Ready to get started? Consider these five things one Goldman Sachs investor always looks for before investing…” Read more from Inc. http://www.inc.com/drew-hendricks/5-things-goldman-sachs-look-for-in-a-company-before-investing.html
Want to create a company like Google? This book tells how. “Google’s former CEO, Eric Schmidt—now the executive chairman—and longtime Google executive Jonathan Rosenberg argue that Google’s management practices are in fact generalizable to any company that employs what they call smart creative people.” Read more from MIT Technology Review http://www.technologyreview.com/news/531056/google-execs-have-ideas-on-how-to-run-your-business/
Developing a holistic view of innovation – 3-point plan to tune up your innovation portfolio. “Rather than relying on randomness or organizational influence to dictate which ideas find a receptive ear, here is a three-point plan for initiating a systematic process for uncovering, assessing and scaling the best ideas.” Read more from Forbes http://www.forbes.com/sites/chunkamui/2014/09/29/3-point-plan-for-balancing-your-innovation-portfolio/
Entrepreneur 4 trends product developers and managers should be watching. Baby boomers, social connectedness, sustainability, and personalization. Read about them at Entrepreneur http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/237962
Tools for conducting a product feature audit. “Lets face it, feature audits sound boring, maybe rebranding them as the Lean Feature Analysis Hack™ will make them seem more hip. Regardless, a feature audit is a powerful tool. Every development team on earth has limited resources, knowing what users actually do in your product lets you focus your work on areas where it has impact.” Read more from Intercom http://blog.intercom.io/before-you-plan-your-product-roadmap/
More reasons why innovation is hard. “With all the pressures most organizations face to compete and innovate these days, it’s probably a surprise that most businesses are actually not very good at it.” Read more from Inc. http://www.inc.com/michael-cooper/the-real-reasons-most-people-cant-innovate.html
Developing products for Millennials – invite them to help develop them. “With more than $1.3 trillion in direct annual spending, the millennial consumer better be on the radar of every brand considering the launch of a new product.” Read more from Entrepreneur http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/237925
Moving into a product role or need to know more about product development and management – read this book because it will help you.
An easy-to-understand foundation in product development and management concepts is what you get with this book. New product team members, managers, and innovation professionals will quickly access a concise, easy-to-follow guide that shows how successful teams develop new products that consumers love. Read more about the book and purchase it at Amazon.