March 11, 2014
Chapter 9 Case Study
Google: New-Product Innovation at the Speed of Light
1. The new product development process at Google is free flowing, fast-tracked, and without boundaries. Google encourages their employees to “think outside the box” and come up with new ideas, no matter how crazy they may seem. Once an idea is proposed, they sent it to testing right away. They try to put a product into use no more than 6 months after development has started; they are not into having 2-year production and design plans. Google also gives their employees one workday a week (20-percent time rule) to work on whatever is going on in their heads. This encourages employees to be innovative and gives them the time and resources to do so.
Twitter is similar to Google in that Twitter has something called “Hack Week” where people get into different teams and use their creativity. They can come up with new ideas or products and some of them may be put to market. LEGO is different, however, in that they go to their customers a lot to see what they want. They let them do things such as vote for new product ideas online and then review the ideas that get 10,000 votes. Google and Twitter, thus far, have kept their innovations within the company. Starbucks’ innovation process can sometimes take up to 20 years to develop, as with the VIA instant coffee. They took their time developing this product and tested it over a few months before putting the product into their stores.
2. Google’s product-development process is customer centered, team based, and systematic. Ultimately, Google is trying to do what their customers want in order to make their customers’ lives easier, as with the creation of iGoogle. Google is team based in how they give their employees one full workday each week (20-percent time rule) to work on any project they want. In this time, they are free to work with whomever they chose and are free
to come up with...
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