Why IRI Members Struggle with Lean Startup in Their Companies

Guest Contributor: John Bacon, CEO, iP2Biz

John Bacon, CEO, iP2Biz
John Bacon, CEO, iP2Biz

I’m a lucky guy! I have worked for very large high-tech manufacturing companies, led software company public offerings both in the U.S and in Europe, and co-founded my own company. Plus, I am faculty for the National Science Foundation’s I-Corp program.

Some of you may know I-Corps as the result of an audacious initiative between your federal government and Steve Blank, serial-entrepreneur turned academic, and the thinker who launched the Lean Startup movement. Continue reading

Occupational Hazards

By Jim Euchner, VP of Global Innovation, Goodyear, and RTM Editor-in-Chief

A career in R&D is an interesting one. It offers the opportunity for continuous learning, the chance to work with interesting people, and the satisfaction of creating something new. Yet there are occupational hazards, as I am reminded each year during annual review season. Basically, I’ve learned, you can’t count on being rewarded for your contributions within an appraisal year—despite the almost Herculean efforts on the part of most of those in management to assure that rewards do match performance. Then, every once in a while, sometimes when you least expect it, the rewards do come.

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Innovation Portfolio Management

By Scott Mathews, Technical Fellow in the Chief Engineer’s office at Boeing Research and Technology and co–guest editor of this special issue of RTM.

It is difficult to understand why doing portfolio management well is so challenging. Shouldn’t it be as simple as deciding on a few attributes, like net present value and time to market, lining up all the opportunities and ranking them on those attributes, then funding the best of the bunch until you run out of money? If life were so simple, we would all have 2.5 children and live happily ever after. Clearly, it’s not. Continue reading

Balancing personnel needs in your innovation culture

By Ed Bernstein, President, Industrial Research Institute

Perhaps the most poorly understood aspect of innovation is the culture that enables (or inhibits) it within an organization. What element differentiates between companies who continually innovate and companies that simply cannot, despite their best efforts? Over the years, IRI’s practitioner-based journal, RTM, has printed several answers to this question and a review of this work approaches the best analysis.

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