MANAGING RISK DURING NEW PRODUCT INTRODUCTION
Under the right conditions, risk can be a great thing. It can motivate you to think outside the box and help you discover new opportunities. Of course, unmitigated risk can cause loss of a business, loss of professional confidence, or even loss of life.
A healthy approach to risk keeps us moving forward but leverages experience. Risk keeps us moving but also keeps us from going too far.
To inform our path and avoid over-extending. This healthy approach starts by asking questions: what could go wrong, what are we able to control, and what’s worth the effort to control? The answers to these questions determine the right path – steering us away from chaos, wasted time/budget, or alienating our target market.
Let’s be honest and blunt: whether you are a start-up, a mid-size, or large corporate enterprise, there are always risks when introducing a new product to market. It’s how you prepare for, assess, manage, and monitor these risks that matter. At Radius Innovation & Development, we want to understand your circumstances and actively engage with your risks to help you realize success. How do we do this? It takes experience, savvy, and candid communication.
Talk, Listen, Learn
At Radius, we have 25+ years of experience helping to bring innovative new products to market. We also have a diverse cross-functional team of savvy professionals who are adept at uncovering risks and assessing them from different angles to turn them into opportunities, or find the best way to manage them. But perhaps most importantly, we understand that risk management is a team sport. When our clients endure the discomfort and have an open conversation about risk, it always uncovers new challenges, opportunities, and informs a better overall approach.
Yes, a big ask. We’ve all worked in environments where the knowledge sharing doesn’t happen or where teams are working in segregated functional silos with minimal to zero cross-communication. There is a reason why the Radius team doesn’t work like this… we’ve all been down this path and know that it doesn’t work. Therefore, we work the way you do, leveraging processes and techniques that build trust and get project teams to open up, discuss problems, ask questions, and work through some tough answers in order to learn. It’s also why we place so much emphasis on truly listening.
The Right Tools at the Right Scale
In too many organizations, risk management is performed using a single process and a single prescribed tool or set of tools, without consideration to the parameters of the project or its measures of success. At Radius, the breadth of projects we work on—from brand strategy to full product development and new product introduction—has forced us to be nimble. We’ve developed a flexible quality management system (QMS) and processes that can be tailored for a very light-touch which will emphasize speed, optimize ROI in high-risk / high-reward scenarios, or be scaled to ensure your mission-critical launch is achieved on-time with a design history file that stands up to full regulatory scrutiny. Because of this diversity, we’ve become adept at assessing each project and collaboratively selecting the most applicable tool(s) and applying the correct level of risk management rigor. We also keep up-to-date with current and future technologies, industry standards and regulations, user trends, and how these all impact opportunities for each new product introduction from start-to-finish.
Does your organization have an informed but flexible approach to risk management, and do you feel like it’s truly a value-add capability? If not, do you know who to talk to improve your situation, or can we help? Radius’ clients often utilize our QMS to facilitate more effective risk management than their systems might allow or to cover gaps in their system.
Changing Technologies, Changing Times
Introducing a new product nowadays requires many elements. More and more of these elements include the seamless integration of physical and digital development cycles and accelerated qualification and launch schedules. Does your team have the experience and bandwidth to effectively manage this complexity and hit your targets? Or could you benefit from a team that’s been there before? Whether you leverage internal experts or turn to partners like Radius, you need to identify the riskiest elements of your technology and address them early.
When managing this complexity, we often employ an iterative process to guide product development and new product introduction. In the past, iteration cycles were too costly and schedules were often made or broken by “getting it right the first time.” But the accelerations gained from modern analytical tools and the Radius Digital Prototype Lab enable the theoretical and real prototype iterations necessary to make adjustments and optimize technical details at a pace that will meet a launch time frame.
Using Risk to Your Advantage
This is how we prepare for, use, manage, and monitor risk to guide our product development process. We use the latest risk management tools and techniques, talk and discuss your opportunity with our diverse experts to set the right approach, and use the latest technologies and techniques to analyze and prototype earlier and more often.
Along the way there will be some twists and turns and your original idea might not be the one that we all agree is the best one to develop – but we will have found the very best opportunity for your market.
The risk lies in chasing an idea without knowing if it is what people want or even care about. This is where the chaos comes in. We work with you to minimize this chaos and use the risk to push us to ideate, innovate, and realize your opportunity. From start-to-finish we’ll make sure we are communicating, developing, and moving in the direction that makes sense for you and your brand.
It’s what we do.
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