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Rethinking the Stage-Gate® Process – A Reply to the Critics


with Bob Becker, Product Development Executive, Advisor and MRT FastTrack Expert Panelist

In this article, Bob Becker responds to recent criticisms of the Stage-Gate® process. Becker argues that Stage-Gate remains a useful model but the key is in the implementation. Most of the defects in Stage-Gate implementations are due to rigid applications of the process that do not take advantage of common opportunities to perform some activities in parallel or to adapt the process to the type of project at hand. For Stage-gates to be a success, says Becker, it is necessary to plan projects to be right sized and efficient. The gates in the process should serve as business checkpoints; these checks should be performed with both the marketplace and the portfolio in mind. Becker also answers, point-by-point, the critics of the Stage-Gate framework. Concludes Becker: “A process that leverages historical learning and best practices from industry leaders, and which is also right sized for the mission at hand, is as close to optimal as you’ll get.”
(5 pages)

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