Discoveries Newsletter

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.

Volume 12, #4, June 2014
Eight excuses companies make for not exploring customer needs up front
by Sheila Mello

Research into the psychology of excuses hypothesizes that one reason individuals rationalize behavior is to make themselves feel okay. Companies--or the people within them--do the same thing.

Volume 12, #3, April 2014
Why not rely on CRM systems for product input?
by Sheila Mello

Opening the floodgates to let customer comments stream directly to the development team is the equivalent of a restaurant deciding to do without waiters, a maitre d' hotel, and a kitchen manager.

Volume 12, #2, March 2014
Conduct better interviews when you learn to relax, tolerate silence, and be a little pushy
by Sheila Mello

One of the best ways to understand your customers’ lives is by interviewing them.

Unfortunately, the customer interview is one of the most frequently botched methods of obtaining information.

Find out why.

Volume 12, #1, January 2014
Stop the insanity of measuring percent of sales from new products
by Wayne Mackey

You’ve heard the saying “use it or lose it.” We’d like to propose a variation for the New Year: “lose it AND use it.”

Volume 11, #7, December 2013
Ditch the battle metaphors to find the balance between structure and flexibility that works for you
by Sheila Mello

War analogies to business have been around for a while. They should be retired from business in general and product development in particular.

Volume 11, #6, November 2013
Three ideas to tame product development chaos
by Sheila Mello

Your company can enjoy great success fueled by little more than inspiration. A single insight, perhaps sparked by the founder’s direct experience, can drive the first wave of growth. But then... Here’s how to avoid the chaos that sometimes follows a fast, successful start—and get on the right track for continued growth.

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