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  1. Tips from Teradyne on the Innovator's Dilemma Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    Boston-based Teradyne, Inc. was a leading player in the field of automatic test equipment for verifying silicon wafers and packaged chips for many applications. However, in the mid-1990s Teradyne faced a formidable challenge from disruptive technologies in both the hardware and software domains. Teradyne responded by spawning an entirely new group that developed a new product, targeting new customers, based on new assumptions. This group successfully met the competitive challenge, creating the fastest new product ramp in the history of the company to that point. The new group opened up lines of business and led to technological improvements in existing products. Along the way, Teradyne learned a number of important lessons about solving Clayton Christensen’s Innovator’s Dilemma. (6 pages)

  2. When Winners Get Blindsided by Success Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    In this interview, Clayton Christensen, author of The Innovator's Dilemma, describes how companies can do everything right and end up with little to show for it. One reason, explains Christensen, is “disruptive technologies” that answer challenges that current customers are not even aware of. Doing the “right thing,” for example, listening to customers, causes developers to miss important opportunities. Christensen calls this “the innovator's dilemma.” In this interview, Christensen provides examples of this dilemma – and indicates a few places companies might look to avoid being blindsided by success. (5 pages)

  3. Driving Growth Through Product, Process And Strategy Innovation (Part One of Two) Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    Robert Tucker is the author of the book, Driving Growth Through Innovation: How Leading Firms Are Transforming Their Futures, the result of a three-year study of more than 20 of the world's most innovative companies. Tucker’s thesis is that innovation is not a mystical quality that a firm possesses (or not) but a process that can be developed, learned, and improved upon. In the first portion of this two-part interview, Tucker demonstrates the importance of innovation as a growth strategy in the current marketplace, shares some of the characteristics of highly innovative firms, and discusses the distinction between product, process and strategy innovation. (5 pages)

  4. Disruptive vs. Sustaining Innovations: Set Up the Rules Before You Play the Game Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    In this commentary, Dev Patnaik argues that the greatest challenge to innovation is not coming up with good ideas, but the organizational and management issues that these new ideas present. Patnaik has observed that incremental projects and breakthrough innovations require substantially different approaches and metrics. Problems occur when these different approaches are not defined in advance. He claims that when the differences between the two processes are not clear, the success of a “blue-sky” project comes to depend less on the quality of the innovation and more on the quality of the deal that the team can cut. Patnaik discusses three areas where breakthrough projects may need to be managed differently from sustaining projects. (3 pages)

  5. Study of Pharmaceutical Industry: Large Firms Produce More Radical Innovations... Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    A study of the pharmaceutical industry finds that larger firms not only produce a greater number of truly revolutionary products, they also benefit more from them. The study examined 255 breakthrough innovations, introduced over a ten-year period, by 66 publicly traded pharmaceutical firms. It measured firm dominance using three dimensions: market share, assets and profits. The study found that the more dominant firms produced two-thirds of the radical innovations. Seventy percent of these innovations were invented and developed in-house. The study also revealed that dominant firms, on average, gained $500M in stock value in the first three days following FDA approval; smaller players averaged less than $50M in the same post-approval timeframe. (5 pages)

  6. Harvard Researcher Says Focus on Manufacturing Process Innovation holds Key to Faster High-Tech Product Success Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    When senior managers in some high-tech firms focus on product innovation to the exclusion of manufacturing process innovation, thinking they're being cost conscious, they're committing a major strategic blunder says Harvard Business School technology and operations professor Gary Pisano. Based on a multi-year study of the practices of six multinational pharmaceutical and five biotechnology firms, Pisano thinks early focus on process technology is what distinguishes winners from also-rans. (5 pages)

  7. Driving Growth Through Product, Process And Strategy Innovation (Part Two of Two) Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    Robert Tucker is the author of the book, Driving Growth Through Innovation: How Leading Firms Are Transforming Their Futures, the result of a three-year study of more than 20 of the world's most innovative companies. Tucker’s thesis is that innovation is not a mystical quality that a firm possesses (or not) but a process that can be developed, learned, and improved upon. In the second portion of this two-part interview, Tucker discusses how to build innovation into an organization and how to measure its progress. (5 pages)

  8. Information Technology and R&D: Sharing Innovations at Kodak Research Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-07

    When Kodak UK R&D switched from a corporate e-mail and workflow system to Lotus Notes, the organization began to consider how Information Technology could be leveraged to increase the productivity of their R&D labs. Kodak UK envisioned a research database of compound documents that would allow scientists and technicians to present their work in a form where rich data could be shared and stored in a master database.The result was the Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN), a shared locus for information about experiments and research. The ELN is an organizational tool for ongoing research, while also serving as a repository for institutional knowledge. In creating such a system Kodak UK R&D discovered the seeds of a number of unexpected changes in behavior, leading to streamlined work on the testing side and a greater collaboration between scientists and analysts. Kodak's Electronic Lab Notebook makes a case for how IT innovations can stir product and process innovations. (4 pages)

  9. Ciba-Corning Diagnostics Adopts Competency Model to Prepare for Sharp Rise in Product Growth Curve Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-07

    While others were focusing primarily on development process improvement, senior R&D staff at Ciba-Corning Diagnostics, a MA-based firm, were asking themselves whether they had the right mix of management skills to expand dramatically. The world's largest seller of critical care diagnostic systems, and an emerging leader in random-access immunodiagnostic systems, the company's leaders knew that their technical expertise and development process were sound. But they realized that they didn't know whether they had the right competencies to sustain and accelerate the rapid growth of recent years. Ciba-Corning’s response was to build a competency model to help instill a high-performance R&D managerial culture. In the process, they developed tools to help existing managers round out their skill set and to guide teams in specifics to look for in the hiring process. (6 pages)

  10. Boeing Company Employs Radical Virtual Team Concept to Create a Breakthrough Innovation Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-06-11

    Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power, a business of the Boeing Company, developed an innovative rocket engine using a groundbreaking model for managing product development projects. Faced with stringent cost, time and performance requirements, Rocketdyne reached beyond the company’s walls to assemble a virtual team composed of world-class professionals focused on a key set of core competencies. The team transcended the boundaries between disciplines and companies, to create one of the first two, new, liquid-fueled rocket engines in the United States in over 25 years. This pilot project demonstrates the viability of an emerging paradigm for collaboration and product innovation. (7 pages)

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