2013-06-26: Two Approaches To Product Development For Lean Startups
H E A T H E R S A R K I S S I A N
D A P - N E W P R O D U C T I N N O V A T I O N
Background on Product Innovation at DAP
Two Approaches for the Lean Start Up
§ Develop End User Research Capabilities
§ Leverage Open Innovation
ROLE OF A NEW PRODUCT INNOVATION MANAGER
Role created a year or so ago to help DAP focus on breakthrough
Experience at lean organizations has been key.
Year 1 – Building a Foundation for Innovation
Year 2 – Taking Risks
WHAT IS PRODUCT INNOVATION
At DAP product innovation means
§ Making jobs cheaper, faster, easier to do;
§ Providing a solution to a previously unmet need or developing a
significantly better solution than what is currently available; and
§ It’s not just a better mousetrap.
DAP’S PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT PROCESSES
3 Phase Discovery Process
§ Opportunity Definition
§ Concept Development
Stage Gate Process
§ 5 gates
END USER RESEARCH
Primarily qualitative research methods aimed at:
§ Understanding and being able to empathize with a specific group of end
users doing a certain type of activity
§ EX) General Contractors and Remodelers using cartridge construction
§ Developing a clear understand of how they prepare, carry out, and
complete a certain types of activity – task analysis
§ Developing an understanding of the different types of end users that carry
out this activity – personas
§ Identifying opportunities to better satisfy these end users
AN EXAMPLE OF END USER RESEARCH
General Contractors and Remodelers using cartridge
§ Research Method
§ Task analysis
§ Opportunities to better satisfy these end users
FREE RESOURCES ON HOW TO DO END USER
Google Ventures Startup Lab workshop: User Research, Quick 'n' Dirty
§ This is an excellent primer, and an easy way to get started.
d.school Bootcamp Bootleg on Design Thinking
§ A variety of methods explained
FREE RESOURCES ON HOW TO DO END USER
How to interview and carry out ethnographies
§ Illinois Institute of Technology's Institute of Design, ID offers a great how to video on
gleaning quality insights
Human Centered Design Toolkit (IDEO)
§ designed for NGOs, but tools translate well for developing products for businesses.
§ End User Research is a significant competitive advantage.
§ Why leave your product’s success up to luck or personal intuition,
when your target end-users can tell you what they will buy.
§ End User Research is not as hard as it seems, there are lots of
great free resources out there.
§ End User Research gets easier the more you do it.
§ If you do not have the right fit personality, time or patience, End
User Research is a great way for someone to earn sweat equity.
WHAT IS OPEN INNOVATION?
First coined by Henry Chesbrough (UCAL Berkley)
“Open innovation is a paradigm that assumes that firms can and
should use external ideas as well as internal ideas, and internal
and external paths to market, as the firms look to advance their
P&G’s Growth Strategy - 50% of innovation from and 50% through
Expecting there are great ideas outside of your organization
HOW OPEN INNOVATION APPLIES TO A LEAN STARTUP
Most anyone can leverage open innovation:
§ No product, no company, want to be an entrepreneur
§ Have a company, looking for new products
§ Have a product, but it could be better with partners
Ways of Leveraging Open Innovation:
§ Checking out local colleges and universities for inventions
§ Seeking out inventors, state level inventor organizations or
inventions firms like Invention Home and Edison Nation
§ Looking for companies that have technologies you could license
and use for example in your software product
HOW DAP IS LEVERAGING OPEN INNOVATION
§ Culture of openness to outside ideas
§ Ability to understand and empathize with inventors and
§ Open Innovation Process
§ Method of attracting inventors and entrepreneurs
§ Examples of product successes
HOW OPEN INNOVATION CAN FAIL
§ Not Invented Here Syndrome
§ Dissimilar Goals
§ Communication Challenges
§ Insufficient Resources to Manage Open Innovation
For more resources of information, just let me know and I can share
them with you.