Front End of Innovation


Navigating the Fuzzy Front-End of Innovation

Navigating the Fuzzy Front-End of Innovation

One of the best descriptions I’ve heard of the front-end of innovation was shared with me by a long-term client: “a simmering cauldron of risk, uncertainty, and politics.” Navigating the front-end is hardly a linear process, nor should it be. Yet, filling your pipeline with new-to-world or new-to-company product concepts requires a somewhat linear process to move the team from point A, to point B,...

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Ripping Off the Band-Aid®

Ripping Off the Band-Aid®

Recently, I was invited to facilitate a session with a prospective client about how to better utilize market research and voice-of-consumer in its innovation process. Apparently, it was a hot topic: the room was filled with people from R&D, product development, marketing, sales, and even finance. I expected to spend four hours going over the basics like determining consumer needs and building product concepts. Within...

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Fool’s Gold:  Innovation without Hearing

Fool’s Gold: Innovation without Hearing

Market research and voice-of-the customer is often expressed as listening. I argue that organizations struggling with innovation do so because they lack the necessary insights to guide their efforts…and insights are a function of hearing – not listening. Here’s the rub. When talking to customers, there are different layers of feedback. Customers are great at giving opinions, but opinions are NOT the same as the...

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