The Innovation Process Case Study
According to the knowledge derived from the course, an innovative product development comprises of a series of events which if properly implemented result to the success of the newly developed product. Both internal and external analyses such as SWOT and marketability trends were necessary before making a decision to initiate the projects. Due to the lack of proper market analysis, the demand for the plain paper copier and the electronic calculators declined within a short while. The project was implemented in 1969 and by the mid-1970s the demand for the calculators declined. SLX had a total of six projects but only two could be implemented at that time. The firm had the obligation to carefully screen all the projects before making the decision on which one to invest in. However, deficiencies were evident since the projects were randomly chosen without a specific criterion. Metrics for measuring the success of the newly developed products were also not put in place. Consequently, this created room for failure of the products since the progress was not closely monitored.
The management approach adopted by the SLX was inadequate and was faced by several deficiencies. The firm experienced management crises and the top managers lacked direction and coherence. The corporate structure was inflexible and could not effectively deal with diversity. For this reason, the firm experienced a problem after the introduction of other product lines. The management also failed to dedicate its attention towards the improvement of the production process and this explains why most of the products that were introduced started failing a few years after their introduction. In addition, the management failed to allocate resource properly to the various department. For instance, during the introduction of the small copier, all resources were allocated to the production department with the claim that if the product was properly designed, there was no need to carry out marketing practice.
The deficiencies in both the product development process and management approach largely affected the outcome that SLX expected to achieve (Wu & Chiu, 2015). The products that were newly introduced boomed for a little while but their demand declined after a short while. The trend can be associated with the failure of the firm to carry out market research before making the decision to invest in a certain product. The failure to evaluate the success potential of a product largely contributed to the difficulties the firm experienced after implementing the project. It is likely that the products omitted during the random selection of the projects could perform better than the selected products.
As a consultant at SLX, I would implement various strategies and correct the deficiencies evident in the firm. To start with, I would advise the management to observe the stages of product development as this helps to ensure that the products introduced in the market have a high success potential. The firm would carry out a proper market analysis before making the decision on the type of product to venture in. The move would help in reducing the challenges associated with random selection of projects. My advice to the management would be to enhance coherence and direction in leading the firm since this dictates the direction of the employees. If the management body does not work collaboratively, the firm is also likely to be divided and the goals of the firm are likely to be unachievable.
Wu, L., & Chiu, M. L. (2015). Organizational applications of IT innovation and firm’s competitive performance: A resource-based view and the innovation diffusion approach. Journal of Engineering and Technology Management, 35, 25-44.