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
Innovation means saying ‘I don’t know’ a lot – run experiments instead and look like a genius. “The answer to all of these big, complicated questions is simple: We don’t know. We have no data on the future where innovation happens. This is what distinguishes innovation from all other forms of value.” Read from from Jeff DeGraff http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeff-degraff/4-innovation-strategies-t_b_6056214.html
Video interview with principal researcher of the ‘Most Innovative Companies of 2014’ – insights into culture and resource. “A new survey by the Boston Consulting Group finds that the most successful companies tend to centralize the decision-making of their innovation efforts.” Watch the interview from Wharton http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/radical-innovation-managing-unmanageable/
Yes culture matters – limiting innovation in China where it should be flourishing. “Taking somebody else’s big idea and working on the small incremental innovations to deliver it to market faster or cheaper involves fewer risks than striking out on something radically new. Being risk averse is a hard habit to change.” Read more from Economic Times http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/opinion/comments-analysis/china-has-barriers-to-innovation-as-government-doesnt-want-to-lose-control/articleshow/44922648.cms?curpg=2
If you are a product developer or manager, get ready for the Internet of Things. “Successful IoT plays require more than simply adding connectivity to a product and charging for service — something many companies don’t immediately understand.” Read more from Harvard Business Review http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/10/the-internet-of-things-will-change-your-company-not-just-your-products/
Does your product lunch include a live event? Make the most of social media. “Social participation during and after live events is a key factor in engaging customers and establishing a sense of community. Not only does ongoing promotion help you maximize both attendee and remote audience engagement, but you also get more value out of a single event than ever before.” Read more from http://www.socialmediaexplorer.com/social-media-marketing/4-powerful-ways-to-integrate-social-media-into-your-live-event/
Missing this trend could sink your product plans – renting is the new owning. “The problem: many people no longer want to buy stuff. They’d rather rent.” Read more from Wired http://www.wired.com/2014/10/apple-amazon-problem-people-dont-want-buy-stuff-anymore/
15 phrases successful product managers don’t say – ‘I did everything on my own’ should be number 1. “If you want to become more successful as an entrepreneur or in your career, you can start by making a habit of talking and thinking more like the people you know or read about who are already successful.” Read more from Entrepreneur http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/238537
Successful product innovators don’t innovate – they solve important problems. “…focusing on solving interesting and important problems tends to be born from customer-centered motives: What’s going on with this set of customers? Where are they ecstatic? Where are they upset? Where do they feel good? Where do they hurt? How can we better serve them?” Read more from Harvard Business Review http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/10/successful-innovators-dont-care-about-innovating/
Ways to fund and build your prototype. “Question: I have a patent-pending police training device. I made a rough prototype before filing the provisional patent, but I don’t have the money to invest in production of an official prototype or to market-test it. Where do I go from here?” Read more from Bloomberg BusinessWeek http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-10-30/small-business-how-to-raise-money-for-a-prototype
The dangers of creating products and brands that are luxury tools – luxury and function don’t play well together. “Over the last year, Apple has heavily invested in the luxury component of their future. They’ve hired executives from Burberry and the Swiss watch industry and re-committed to their luxury-structured retail stores as well.The challenge they face, the challenge you’ll face if you choose to try to combine function with the top of the market, is that eventually, these two paths diverge.” Read more from Seth Godin http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2014/10/decoding-apple-as-a-luxury-tools-company.html
3 ways product managers can differentiate their products and use competitors to their advantage. “If two companies are selling similar products, how can you differentiate yourself so customers buy from you and not your competitor?” Read more from Entrepreneur http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/239070
Why is corporate innovation difficult? Too often it does not support strategy. Find alignment. “But my work with colleagues studying successful firms suggests that maximum innovative output occurs when contributors believe that they have absolute freedom to contribute and pursue innovative ideas, while at the same time, top management believes that it remains in complete control.” Read more from Harvard business http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/10/unlock-employee-innovation-that-fits-with-your-strategy/
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