Discoveries Newsletter

Volume 13, #6, November 2015
What a winning NFL coach can teach you about letting go and being nimble
by Sheila Mello

Even if you don’t follow football, you can pick up some business tips from Belichick’s approach to running his team and winning games. He is good at both.

Volume 13, #5, September 2015
Hint: There is no one-size-fits-all definition of innovation
by Sheila Mello

Rankings and ratings (of companies, schools, products, or anything else) can be interesting to consumers and potentially distressing to those who don't make the list or are near the bottom. We look at the recent Forbes list of The World’s Most Innovative Companies and why these rankings don’t give much concrete direction to companies interested in improving innovation.

Volume 13, #4, August 2015
Watch what can happen when you give your market research organization a seat at the innovation table
by Sheila Mello

You probably have a good idea about what makes product development innovative. You may already have a plan to create a culture of innovation in your development organization. But are you overlooking a key part of the business that could contribute substantially to product development innovation?

Volume 13, #3, May 2015
How the interplay between customers and culture makes lean development effective—or not
by Sheila Mello

“You can never be too rich or too thin.” This quote, usually attributed to Wallis Simpson, the Duchess of Windsor, has a great hold on the popular imagination. Might it be relevant to the pursuit of lean activities in the business world?

Volume 13, #2, April 2015
What breakfast can teach you about your product portfolio
by Sheila Mello

Radically rethinking your core business may be necessary at some point, whether you’re an established company in a mature market or a relatively new company in an emerging market, but better not to be in a position that requires rethinking in the first place. Here are three essentials we’ve found for keeping your product portfolio fresh and, ideally, a step ahead—rather than a step or two behind—current consumer preferences.

Volume 13, #1, March 2015
Charting a path to horizontal implementation excellence in vertically structured companies
by Wayne Mackey

On any given day, you could probably identify five or ten recurring implementation problems rooted in the interfaces between various groups within your company. Many of those problems are like uninvited guests who have outstayed their welcome. So why are they still around? Why haven’t you fixed them and given them the boot?

Volume 12, #8, December 2014
Three out of four businesses are getting their product portfolios wrong. Are you in the happy minority?
by Sheila Mello

Would you be surprised if I told you that a majority of organizations are not doing a very good job managing, prioritizing, and balancing their product portfolios? Here are some sobering statistics--and what you can do to avoid being in the unlucky majority.

Volume 12, #7, November 2014
Expand your ideas about how to collaborate, empathize, and innovate
by Sheila Mello

The biggest payoff in product design lies not in solving a known problem in a new way, but in discovering a completely new problem. Design thinking can be a great tool in that regard, but sometimes you need to extend your view a bit.

Volume 12, #6, September 2014
Alignment For Long-Term Success
by Wayne Mackey

Faster, better, and cheaper only matter if all of the elements of your business are heading in the right direction.

Volume 12, #5, July 2014
An off-label use for tried-and-true VOC techniques
by Wayne Mackey

Here are some ideas to apply VOC techniques inside your company, as a tool to get your boss to not only consider your great new idea, but fall in love with—and fund—it.