By Kempton Coady
A new product can dramatically change the fortunes of a company, if done right. But the introduction can also cause the company to defocus on the its core capabilities and key sources of sales and profitability. Some extremely successful companies have failed to introduce new products and as a result they went out of business.
These failures take many different forms. When a product does not sell, when it is recalled or discontinued, or when it otherwise does not come close to meeting a company’s expectations or plans, it can be marked as a failure. While failures are expected, some can be so catastrophic they can lead to permanent damage to a company’s reputation, layoffs, and even complete financial ruin.
Use a systems approach to developing a new product or service:
- Define the product or service
- Conduct a feasibility analysis
- Develop the product or service and assemble a team
- Constantly validate the product or service
- Implement the product or service
- Evaluate successes or failures and adapt as necessary
- Support and final actions
The first thing to determine is whether the product or service will be feasible. You need to determine what is the customer pain or problem. Is the product or service unique, or does it have other qualities which will make it preferred on the market? What is the size of the market for the product?
Detail a specific product or service: Much thought must be given to the design of any product or service.
Consider development costs of development: These are estimated based on hardware and software requirements.
Test the results: Go to prospective customers and evaluate the product or service plan to determineif it will it succeed. Make a “go or no go” decision, or modify your development plan.
Begin development: If the product or service plan is acceptable, create prototypes. Assemble a team to complete the development. You should also develop any after-sales services or product options that can be sold to customers.
Final steps: Create after-sales support and prepare to introduce the product or service to the market. Establish a budget and metrics.
Consumable associated with the system – are there saleable after sales services or product options?
Constantly validate your development program to assure that the product or service can be brought in at specification, at the costs you planned, and that distribution expenses make sense.
With the correct team, begin to implement the introduction of the new product or service. Constantly evaluate and test your results against customer prospects.
Introduce the product or service through your distribution channels. Assure the proper after-sales support structure is in place to assure success.
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A SENIOR LEVEL EXECUTIVE with over 30 years successful, results-oriented domestic and international experience in the MEDICAL DEVICE BUSINESS. A Business Leader who created significant increases in profits and cash flow and/or raised money to expand enterprises. A Leader, who attracts and motivates the best talent to achieve the desired results. Board member for AMEX, NASDAQ, and London Stock Exchange companies. Significant international experience in Europe, Latin America, and Japan. Experience the last seven years has included Professorships at Goldman Sachs 10KSB program and University of Connecticut Graduate School of Business. Earned BS Bates College, MBA and MPS Cornell University.
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