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HBR article

In this way, much of the waste in time and money that is often associated with new product development is ameliorated. The article goes on to detail how Eli Lilly created a special team which was named “Chorus” whose sole purpose was to guide and direct research and development of new product lines based up on the metrics that have been previously related. Due to a strict adherence to the previous rubric, Eli Lilly was able to nearly double the amount of drug compounds that they developed between both 12 and 24 month periods. The article continues to describe the pitfalls that not employing such logic can provide to the overall process. Furthermore, the authors detail the situation that often arises where key leaders and shareholders ignore the obvious signs that a product line displays during development regarding its ability to succeed in the marketplace and yield a profit. Oftentimes, this is the result of the fact that management and/or key leaders have strong beliefs with respect to the overall viability of a given product and are therefore reticent to accept any proof that the line may result in eventual failure. Specific examples of such blind faith are given by the authors with relation to Ely Lilly’s drug tests that continued to send red flags to the development team; however, management continued to pour money down the rabbit hole with respect to continuing to fund the research. The authors discuss a secondary pitfall that many would-be product development teams suffer from. This secondary pitfall centers upon the fact that many product development teams terminate projects/products prematurely due to lack of evidence that the project/product has an overall likelihood to succeed. Although this can result from a number of factors, the authors note that the main reason results from an unclear and undifferentiated research process. For purposes of the analysis, the authors define one of the key components of success to relate to the concept of POC (Proof of Concept). This relates the process that a firm can employ that provides a highly focused fast track path of research to determine whether or not the product has likelihood of overall success. In this way, targeted experiments can be rapidly employed to prove whether or not a product has an overall likelihood of success. Likewise, the authors note that determining overall project/product profitability is also a likely determinate that should be used in order to determine what level of time and funding should be provided to ensure that the project maintains the highest ability to produce a net profit. Similarly, the authors argue that product success can further be maximized by dividing the stages of product testing and development into early and late stages. By further defining the metrics with respect to what goals and tasks should be accomplished in the early and late stages, it is abundantly clear for product development where the product lies in terms of overall viability at any particular juncture of the process. In this way, the guess work is taken out of the process and long-term product developments that can turn into a multimillion dollar mistake are effectively weeded out. This novel approach is simplistic; however, it nonetheless works. Many firms have followed in ...Show more

Summary

Name Date Course Section/# Article Review: A More Rational Approach to New-Product Development The article argues that some sense can be made out of the overall product development process. Although many firms languish in this stage and waste valuable time and resources, the authors argue that the process can be defined and regulated to yield the highest number of profitable returns while minimizing risky developments that will likely not yield a high degree of profitability…
Author : harrisonhessel
HBR article essay example
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