Interesting article on product development management

I really resonated with this article. As the single industrial designer/product development person who also does a lot of graphic design, marketing etc… this was something that really drives home what I have been saying to management for a few years now.

Well worth a read.

Fortunately, we rarely fall into any of those 6 traps in our process.

We do occasionally fall for fallacy 1: High utilization of resources will improve performance. The question is “Why is this taking so long?” or “Why hasn’t this launched?”

But then we remind ourselves that shit happens. Currently, I have an ugly static discharge issue that came out of nowhere. Not good in an oxygen-rich OR.

Our NPD marketing team usually calls me out on it too. I give them the “Scotty” timing and when the technical team beats it, instead of “Great, you are ahead of schedule.”, I get, “Why didn’t you give me the ‘real’ timing?”.

That’s when we have the shit can hit the fan conversation.

Great article, I’ve just sent it to the owners of the company I work for :confused:

I’m the first designer they’ve had in-house, as well as the lone person covering most bases of development, graphics etc. The owners/managers are now quite good at avoiding most of these fallacies, but initially we got caught a number of times, particularly regarding project timeframes and the high variability of the development process.

They make great points on doing fast iterations and having shared objective resulting from a thorough understanding and definition of people’s needs. It is very much in line with the ‘lean’ approach to everything. Even a piece of cardboard constructed in 2 minutes can be a prototype to test or communicate a principle and learn more about it. And even an empty whiteboard sheet on the wall, meant to create an overview of the project, can be the start of something great.