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Co-creation May 27, 2008

Posted by Coolguy in Management.
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This could be one of this buzzwords you may be hearing more often, because, when Prahlad C.K, just named most influential management thinker in the world by Times of London, speaks, world pays attention.

While there is certainly no dearth of material on the internet exploring this topic, this post is my take on this not-so-new phenomenen.

The idea is that successful companies no longer invent new products and services entirely on their own. They create them along with their customers to produce an unique experience for every customer. Since no company own or can own enough resources to create these unique experiences, the management guru advocates that companies should organize a global networkers of suppliers and partners todo so.

In his latest book, The New Age of Innovation, Prahlad cites several examples of this phenomenon. So pretty powerful applications he cites are facebook opening its platform to allows users/companies to create applications based on the platform and how iPod allows users to to create their own experience by loading it with the content they like.

The company at the center of co-creation still has control on which choices it wants to offer its customers and how it wants to deliver them.

One of the challenges traditional companies may find adopting to this model is that they are built to creating and managing their own products.

One possible way to include customers needs in the product creation process is through the use of Quality Function Diagrams.

The 10 stages of innovation May 25, 2008

Posted by Coolguy in Management.
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Here is a ten stages of innovation, that I can very much relate to (based on)

* Scepticism
* Enthusiasm
* Brass band and fireworks
* Results aren’t visible
* Existing business suffering
* Is it worth it?
* Start to see pay offs
* This is taking time
* Maybe not a bad idea
* It works!

Phases of innovation May 25, 2008

Posted by Coolguy in Management.
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Off late I have been working on a development of a new product and reading about product development process and innovation. Here are some interesting things I gleaned.

Phases of innovations are typically mystery, model, method and madness:

  • Mystery: This is where innovator explores and develops the idea. This is a resource intensive process.
  • Model: In this phase the idea moves mainstream, into market, and its feasibility(technical, customer needs, cost effectiveness, market) are determined.
  • Method: This is all about making the idea ready for mass production. It focuses on producing as many of the products with as possible with as inputs as possible.

New product development process May 25, 2008

Posted by Coolguy in Design for Six Sigma.
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Six Sigma advocates a 5 stage process for new product development. The complete NPD process includes the following stages:

  1. Concept Study. This is done to uncover unknowns about the market and technology.
  2. Feasibility investigations are done to determine the limitations of the concept.
  3. Development of new product includes specifications, needs of customer, study of target markets etc.
  4. Maintenance activities following delivery.
  5. Continous learning through status reports and evaluation.

Formula for creating winning products May 25, 2008

Posted by Coolguy in Design for Six Sigma.
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According to a old (1993) study, new products account for 40% of sales and 46% of profits. For every 7 to 11  new product ideas, only 1 becomes a successful product according to a study.

Here are some of the factors for creating winning products.

  • Unique, superior product. Product should have value for customer
  • Strong market orientation. Understanding for customers needs and wants.
  • Predevelopment work. Up front activities like market analysis, technical assessment are vital before development starts.
  • Good product definition. Product and project should be completely defined before development begi
  • Quality of execution through out the development process.
  • Team effort including research & development, marketing, sales and operations.
  • Proper project selection to provide adequate resources for good projects. Poor projects must be killed.
  • Good product launch ensures success.
  • Top management leadership plays a vital role in product development process. They must provide strategy, resources and leadership.
  • Speed to market.
  • Strong, established new product process to screen new products
  • Attractive market makes it easier to have a successful project

DMADV October 4, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in Six Sigma.
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Its a five step process for Six Sigma design for new products. Its useful when product or process is not in existence and one needs to be developed.

  1. Design : Define project goals and deliverables
  2. Measure : Measure customer needs and specifications
  3. Analyze : Analyze process options to meet customer needs.
  4. Design : Develop process details to meet customer needs
  5. Verify: Verify the design performance and ability to meet customer needs.

IDOV October 3, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in Six Sigma.
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With DMAIC the six sigma analyst takes an existing process and follows a series of steps to improve its current state.

IDOV (Identify, Design, Optimize and Validate) quantifies the steps necessary to achieve six sigma quality in new products and processes.

Four step IDOV Model:

  • Identify: Overall product requirements are identified. Quantified customer information (customer feedback) becomes first set for CTQ. Technical requirements, performance targets and specifications (Use a team charter, QFD, FMEA and Benchmarking)
  • Design:Overall layout and geometry of product is developed.  Tools used typically are
    • DOE (Design of Experiments)
    • PQS (Product Quality Scorecards) are defined
    • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)
    • Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)
    • Statistical Inference (ANOVA)
  • Optimize:  Capability analysis for each component and sub-component.
  • Validate: Test and validate the design.

Types of new products October 3, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in Design for Six Sigma.
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In the area of new product development, here are some commonly accepted new product terms

  1. New-to-world products : These are inventions and discoveries such as laser printers etc.
  2. New category products : These are products that are not new to the world, but to the company.
  3. Additions to product lines : These are extensions to the company’s existing product line like diet coke.
  4. Product improvements : Improvements to existing products.
  5. Repositioning’ s : Products that are re targeted for new use. Baking soda as a deodorant
  6. Cost Reductions: New products replacing exisitng one’s, with lower cost.