Improving Decision-Making in Gate Meetings


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The right data and processes to deliver value to the innovation process

Successfully executed gated processes bring a company's innovation strategy to life.

Join innovation professionals from Land O'Lakes and the J.M. Smucker Company as they share some of the practices they've learned and refined when it comes to transforming innovation processes and making the most of gate meetings.

During this webinar, you will:

• Learn tips and tricks from your peers in the consumer goods industry for making the most of gate meetings
• Highlight the type of data required to inform decision-making
• Leverage the practices used to successfully transform gate meetings
• Present your own challenges and questions to our expert panel

To view this webinar in its entirety, visit:

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Improving Decision-Making in Gate Meetings

  1. 1. Improving Decision-Making in Gate Meetings The right data, people and processes to deliver value Featuring speakers from Interact with us throughout today’s session #InnovX
  2. 2. Strategy OfficeInnovation Initiative About Our Facilitators Scott Siegel, Senior Manager, Kalypso Scott is a senior manager specializing in innovation strategy, global design and implementation of new product development and portfolio processes. He brings over 15 years of product management and product development experience with several leading brands and companies to Kalypso's clients. Bryan Seyfarth, Ph.D., Director of Consumer Goods, Sopheon Bryan is the consumer goods segment leader for Sopheon. Bryan works with consumer goods companies globally to define and implement innovation best practices to improve new product output and financial success. His perspectives and analysis have appeared in such publications as CGT and Retail Leader, and he is a frequent conference presenter. Interact with us throughout today’s session #InnovX
  3. 3. Welcome to the Consumer Goods Innovation Exchange • Virtual series featuring knowledge- sharing, storytelling & discussion with innovation professionals • Real-life experiences, successes & challenges from leading consumer goods companies • Insight into real solutions for approaching and tackling your biggest innovation and NPD challenges Innovation in practice, not theory
  4. 4. Does Your Organization Have a Well-Defined and Adopted Gate Process?
  5. 5. When it Comes to Gate Meetings, Which Part of the Process Presents the Most Challenge Within Your Organization? Strategy Office
  6. 6. Strategy OfficeInnovation Initiative About Our Presenters Gabriela Bonadonna Land O’Lakes Innovations & New Business Development Rosemary Pennington The J.M. Smucker Company Marketing Innovation Foodservice
  7. 7. Land O’Lakes Dairy Foods Gabriela Bonadonna Manager, Innovations & New Business Development 7
  8. 8. > We’re a farmer-owned, Fortune 200 company with a purpose: Feeding a growing global population 8  Annual revenue $14+ billion  3,200 dairy members  1,000 ag cooperatives  Serving +300,000 agricultural producers  ~10,000 employees  300+ facilities in the U.S.  3 business units  Goal to double revenues and increase international growth in the next 10 years
  9. 9. > Land O’Lakes Dairy Foods: 9  $4.2 billion in sales  #1 in branded butter and deli cheese  A leading brand in dairy–based foodservice products  A leading producer of dairy powders  Nationally recognized dairy R&D laboratory  Milk supplied by our members
  10. 10. Land O’Lakes at Ross School of Business – Michigan > Gateways to Growth: Our Stage Gate Model 10 Gates represents a Decision Making Moment
  11. 11. Land O’Lakes at Ross School of Business – Michigan > Successful Decision Making Criteria  Define measurement criteria and gain buy-in  Promote cross-functional collaboration  Leverage data to enable decision making  Identify governance body and process  Train cross-functional teams and decision makers – Stage-Gate Process – Intent and Objective of the Gate Meetings – Measurement Criteria – Governance  Be flexible, be patient  Reward desired behaviors 11
  12. 12. Land O’Lakes at Ross School of Business – Michigan > Lessons Learned  Not a short or smooth process to implement Stage Gate process  Success requires key stakeholder buy-in and support and organizational commitment  Need to differentiate between the Decision Making Process and the Decision Making Model  Think about the Software as an Enabler (it should adapt to your philosophy and needs) 12
  13. 13. > Land O’Lakes at Ross School of Business – Michigan Remember, 13 It’s a Journey Collaborate Maintain Objectivity Reward Desired Behavior
  14. 14. Our Company & Innovation CG Innovation Exchange May 15, 2014 14
  15. 15. Company Heritage • Founded in 1897 by Jerome M. Smucker • Headquartered in Orrville, Ohio • Leading North American brands • Five generations of family management • Commitment to quality and consumer trust
  16. 16. 16 Our Purpose Helping to Bring Families Together to Share Memorable Meals and Moments
  17. 17. 17 Basic Beliefs The Company’s values and principles that guide both strategic decisions and our daily behavior • Quality • People • Ethics • Growth • Independence
  18. 18. 18 Business Segments – Our Brands U.S. Retail Coffee U.S. Retail Consumer Foods International, Foodservice,& Natural Foods
  19. 19. Innovation Horizons Master Plan Resource Management Product & Technology Strategy Where/How to Play Innovation Launch Process Project Management People Portfolio Management Innovation Strategy Initiative Launch Products That Deliver Memorable Meals & Moments Climate Culture Leadership The Innovation Diamond The Innovation Diamond™: An Executive Framework Dr. Scott Edgett and Dr. Robert Cooper
  20. 20. The Project ( Stage- Gate) •What is the Consumer Proposition? • What is the Technical Solution? • What is the Supply Chain Plan? • What is the Commercialization Plan? Am I delivering needed Project Financials? 5 Key Questions that must be answered in an Innovation project Increasing Information Over Time HOW WHAT
  21. 21. 21 Innovation Launch Process 1st ShipLaunch Gate Money Gate Charter Gate Study Request Gate Stage 5 Launch 5 months Stage 4 Qualify 2 months Stage 3 Create 4 months Stage 2 Scoping 3 Months 5 months The “What” The “How” Stage 1 Discovery Increasing Information Over Time
  22. 22. The Project Team One Clear Leader Multi- functional Participation Accountability • Leadership assigned by Business • Often Marketing, but depends on the type of project • All key functions must be involved at every stage, but intensity of participation changes through the project life depending on the stage. • Keep the project team intact through the project life • Project Team has a “contract” with the Gate Keeping Team to deliver the project. • Success Criteria are the Terms of the “contract” and are agreed for each Stage.
  23. 23. Innovation Launch Process
  24. 24. Innovation Council Purpose Ensure that innovation-related activities are aligned to the SBA strategy and strategic issues. Remove internal roadblocks so that innovation can be coordinated and supported by processes and resources. The council makes strategic choices as to where, when and how the SBA will pursue growth Business Need Macro view of various levels of activity Ensure ad-hoc activities are of strategic importance Drive prioritization of resources Capability Building Meet on a regularly scheduled basis (monthly – prior to FBR) Development and coordination of processes Development of appropriate culture to foster an innovative environment Typical agenda topics Gate reviews State of the portfolio (launch timing) Red flags (hurdles, gaps, needs) New business (opportunities, future priorities) Comprised of SBA Cross Functional Leadership
  25. 25. Innovation Launch Process Creating A Disciplined Approach from Ideation to Start of Ship…  Effective Stage & Gate process  Stages are where Work is done  Gates are where Decisions are made Gates are where Decisions are made Stages are where Work is done Project Stage 1 Gate By the Project Team By the Management Called the Gate Keeping Team
  26. 26. Innovation Launch Process Role: Gate Keeper • There are a lot of new product ideas and limited resources – Gatekeepers push back when resources are not available • The Innovation Launch Process helps the company to insure focus is on the highest value projects – Gatekeepers ensure proper focus • The process also helps leadership manage risk by allowing check points (Gates) eliminate weaker projects or those that do not meet strategic priorities – Gatekeepers make Go/No Go/Recycle decisions
  27. 27. Effective Gate Keeping Meetings Answer 3 Questions • 1. Is the project still on track with the overall goals of the project? • 2. What is the direction / goals for the next stage? • 3. Do we proceed, delay or cancel the project, based on the above?
  28. 28. Innovation Launch Process • Types of Gate Decisions – Go – project has met all expectations of the current stage and is approved to move to the next stage of work. Appropriate resources have been allocated. – Hold – project will be placed on hold pending a more final decision; typically until next review cycle. This could be due to resource availability or new information that needs to be assessed. Project work stops. – Recycle – project will be recycled to the previous stage. Usually as a result of new information that requires more due diligence; i.e. validating positioning concept, turf analysis, competitive threats, pricing etc. availability or new information that needs to be assessed. Project work continues and timeline is re-evaluated. – No Go – project is killed and all work stops. This is typically due to the objectives not met and no clear path identified to deliver intended results. All information learned is reapplied to other initiatives – Conditional Go – project has met most expectations of the current stage and is approved to move to the next stage of work pending the completion of a task that is underway. Appropriate resources have been allocated.
  29. 29. Role of the Gate Keeper Innovation Launch Process Gatekeeper Guide Gate Name Gate Overview Gatekeeper Objectives ● This is a very soft review of the work from the Discover Stage ● Approving this gate allows the team to complete a charter which requires considerable time from marketing resources and may require investment to obtain data ● Alignment of the idea to strategy ● Size of prize merits this further work and/or investment ● Approve the resources for the Define Stage (completing a charter) ● The Charter Gate formally communicates the decision to pursue the opportunity by approving the deployment of cross functional resources ● Approving this gate sanctions the team to confirm the business case, develop prototypes, and utilize cross functional resources to understand the cost and feasibility of the project ● Alignment of the charter to business strategy ● Financial goals & other success criteria meet SBA hurdles ● Approve the resources for the Create Stage (develop prototypes, determine cost & feasibility) ● The Money Gate finalizes the decision criteria for the team to meet and formally communicates the decision to launch if these criteria are met ● Approving this gate sanctions the team to confirm the manufacturing process through a plant trial ● Alignment to the launch success criteria ● Financial analysis & other success criteria meet SBA hurdles ● Approve the resources for the Qualify Stage (plant trials, consumer testing) ● The Launch Gate is the final approval by SBA leadership that the initiative is to proceed with product launch preparations ● Approving this gate fully sanctions the addition of the product to the portfolio ● Agreement that the relevant success criteria have been met and critical risks have been mitigated ● Agreement to all elements of the execution and roll-out plans Study Request Charter Gate Money Gate Launch Authorization
  30. 30. Segment Profit NPV IRR Status: Overall Budget Technical Schedule Project Description Team Recommendation O/R Score Feasibility Score Launch Date Strategic Fit • Jif Growth • Strategic Architecture: Easy for You • Expand Grab ‘n Go portfolio offerings Decisions/Commitments Needed Year 3 Net Sales ($) Volume (EU) Gross Incremental Total Investment Critical Issues & Risks Launch Jif to Go Dippers in Foodservice; a single serving of pretzel crisps in a convenient cup stacked on top of Jif To Go peanut butter for dipping. •Creamy with Pretzel crisps •Chocolate Silk with Pretzel Crisps • 8 count • 16 count August 1, 2014 G G G G 4.07 • shelf life • Co-packer start up • Competitive activity • Jif To Go cannibalization Go Approval to proceed to next gate $100K JF Jif To Go Dippers in Foodservice Charter Gate Example Template 4.50
  31. 31. Gate Keepers Also Have Responsibility For The Innovation Portfolio •Will the pipeline deliver our financial goals for the next 1, 2 and 3 years? •Is the pipeline adequately populated with ideas? Base Business Goal Year 3 Goal Year 2 Goal Year 1 Contribution from Base Business & Innovation Active Projects 100’s 10’s 10 4
  32. 32. 32 Portfolio View : Innovation Launch Process 1st Ship Traditional Stage- Gate Launch Gate Money Gate Charter Gate Study Gate 5 Launch 5 months Stage 4 4Qualify 2 months 3 Create 4 months 2 Define 3 Months 1 Discover 5 months AuditIdea Capture Prioritize  Ideate  Assess  Prioritize Assess ResultsPromote to Project Execute  Volume  Dollars  Delivery of Objectives Filter 3 2 1 Pipeline Active Closed Strategic Gate
  33. 33. Portfolio Planning Portfolio Planning: • Assess Portfolio • Risk Vs. Return Portfolio Planning: • Analyze Financials • Including Existing Product Portfolio Check Resource Supply/Demand Strategically Balance Resources With Portfolio Portfolio Planning Year Probability of Success Return Return vs. Risk Financial Assessment Contribution from Base Business & Innovation $- $100 $200 $300 $400 $500 $600 $700 $800 $900 FY03 FY04 FY05 FY06 FY07 FY08 FY09 TotalGrossMarginContribution($MM) Active Projects FY2014 Products FY2013 Products Company ConfidentialLastUpdated 28 July 2005 Current Products Prioritized Portfolio Project Priority P1 P2 P3 P4 P5 P6 P7 Frozen Zone Current Projects Planning Horizon Project 3 Project 4 Project 7 Project 2 Project 1 Project 5 Project 6 Product Roadmaps Capacity Line Resource Delivery Resource Supply/Demand Assessment Skill Set 1 Skill Set 2 Skill Set 3 Is the capability to….
  34. 34. Portfolio Planning Links to Strategic Planning IO SBA Supply Chain Innovation Council Brand/ Category Team Purpose -Strategy - Benefit - Risk - Investment Frequency Outputs Annual Quarterly Update Strategy, Establish Priorities Pulse & Adjust Annual Quarterly Division Priorities Pulse Quarterly Monthly Capacity to Execute Pulse & Adjust Quarterly Monthly Rank Gate Decisions; SBA Priorities Quarterly Monthly Rank Pulse & Adjust
  35. 35. Future Benefits… Capabilities PlatformsOpportunities Business Priorities Feasibility We have an opportunity to drive efficiency by implementing across our brands and divisions to leverage synergies. International, Foodservice, Natural Foods U.S. Retail Consumer Foods U.S. Retail Coffee
  36. 36. Our Journey Stage -Gate Process Developed and Implemented Project Lists in Various Locations & with Various Metrics Automated the ILP with Accolade PM. Common Language & One List. Created New Item Decision Tool 2014 Initiated Gate Meetings with Portfolio Reviews Future: Cross Unit Portfolio Visibility Open Innovation Project Management Limited Visibility 2008 2013 2014 Future2011 Data Focus Data Driven Decisions Unlimited Visibility Increasing Innovation Maturity Over Time Right Projects @ Right Time with Right People Right Execution to Accelerate Business Performance Improve Decision Making, Priority Setting & Long-Term planning
  37. 37. Provide on- going Training, Change Management and System Governance Create a Disciplined Approach that Anticipates Change and Allows for Appropriate Flexibility Integrate with the Strategic Business Planning Process Keep it Simple and Start with the Familiar Innovation Process Key Learning
  38. 38. Two critical ingredients to an effective Stage & Gate process 1. Use Success Criteria  Decision tool for setting the right goals for a project  Indicator of project readiness to advance to the next Stage (including Launch) 2. Develop a Disciplined Gate Keeping Process  Strategic alignment  Priority Setting  Resource Allocation  Accountability for project Success
  39. 39. Three Common Gate Keeping Pitfalls 1. Success Criteria Creep  Usually downwards to lower standards for timing and cost reasons 2. No multi-functional participation at every Gate.  Dialog amongst the Gate Keeping (management) team is essential to identify all issues and opportunities 3. Ultimate Decision Maker (usually the Business Leader) is not engaged – or engaged too late in the project
  40. 40. “Crowd-sourced” Q&A • What is the Cadence/Composition of your Gate Meetings? • What are your Gate Meeting “Ground Rules”? • How do you Effectively Prepare for your Gate Meetings? • What Information Matters/Gets Used in your Gate Meetings? • How are your Gate Decisions Really Made? • Best-Practices for What Happens After the Gate Meeting? • How Does Technology Help Enable Your Gate Meetings? Gabriela Bonadonna Land O’Lakes Rosemary Pennington The J.M. Smucker Company
  41. 41. Events in the Series Driving Innovation Process Effectiveness How to overcome challenges in the execution & adoption of NPD processes Thursday, March 20th Making Innovation Global How to support standard innovation and NPD processes across the organization Thursday, April 24th Improving Decision-Making in Gate Meetings The right data, people and processes to deliver value Thursday, May 15th • Watch for content • Access onDemand
  42. 42. US: 1-216-378-4290 Europe: +31-651-186-191 US: 1-952-851-7500 Europe: +44 (0) 1483 685 735 Thank You! Feel free to address any follow-up questions to: