Before You Don Your Product Development Cap

You know the drill – you put on your sleek new product development cap, making sure it’s not too tight as to give you brain damage, or not too loose so it flies off into the void of failure.

You take a deep breath and reflect – the economy seems to be improving (cautiously), but your markets are perpetually in flux, acquisitions and mergers abound, and your customers and prospects are smarter than they’re ever been.

This couldn’t be truer than within the human capital industry.

It’s okay, though, because you’re going to wow those HR executives. You’ve adjusted your cap, you’re ready to create the most technologically advanced ATS (applicant tracking system) the recruiting industry has ever seen (complete with artificial intelligence for sourcing and assessment and other shiny bells and whistles), but then what?

Be smart. Be flexible. Be careful.

Whether you’re developing a new product for an existing market, or a new product for a new market, there is much research to be done, a myriad of details to manage, and some common mistakes to avoid.

We recently came across a great article by Cheryl Gidley, a former GE Capital executive and current managing partner at Gidley Consulting, that discusses just that – Seven reasons new technology product development goes astray.

One of the most striking (and poetic) comments Gidley makes is this:

“New product development is a series of parallel and serial nested logic problems on a roller coaster in the dark with bungee seat belts. It’s a great time. It’s a perpetual source of self-motivating adrenaline, but like the movie “Jackass,” it’s not something to try at home while hacking along without a user’s manual.”

Are you turning purple yet?

New product development can create unimaginable growth for your organization, but “it can also flame out and leave you standing on the street with a little cardboard box that contains your worldly desk belongings.”

So before you send those marketing brochures to the printer, be smart and read Seven reasons new technology product development goes astray.

Now you can exhale.

(Yikes, my head hurts. Does this cap make me look innovative?)