Thoughts on entrepreneurship, technology, innovation, startups, small business, manufacturing, engineering, & 3D Printing
Filtering by Tag: Product Development
The global Internet of Things IoT market is expected to increase by more than $5 trillion over the next six years, according to IT research agency, International Data Corporation (IDC). The big takeaway from CES 2015 for me is the fact that we have barely scratched the surface of what's possible. We have the opportunity to improve energy & operational efficiencies in cities, homes, and various other areas that we frequent. The question I hear from numerous customers is "how can small businesses capitalize on this opportunity?" I will do my best to answer this question and give you some suggestions in a couple of blog posts.
In answering this question the thing I want you to understand is that small businesses have a competitive advantage, agility. The ability to innovate quickly, because of the lack of bureaucracy and corporate structure is where startups & small businesses have made their mark. Meanwhile innovation within large companies is often slow and ineffective. Part of this agility is remaining flexible and adaptable to change.
The challenge for any small business is bringing the right talent together. It's rare for a single company to have all of the engineering, programming & manufacturing expertise under one roof, because hiring and keeping top talent is expensive for any small business. The good news is you have options and in my opinion freelancers are an attractive one.
The economic downturn caused droves of the generation Y tech enthusiasts to explore new ways to make a living and many turned to freelancing. As a matter of a fact in terms of trajectory the independent worker, (Freelancers) category is expanding faster than the overall labor force. So, in theory you could build a freelance team (each having the necessary skill set) and give them the tools to collaborate and work together on your IOT product.
Anything to add? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
Managing complexity is one of the greatest opportunities of our time. Design thinking can create clarity and understanding of this complexity, and fuel innovation. But you have to be willing to go out, find great ideas, try new things, and sometimes, fall flat on your face. Design is a tool to create something new, not just improve on an existing model. Albert Einstein hits the nail right on the head when he stated "We cannot solve a problem with the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." Design thinking requires you to think and act like an entrepreneur by finding a need in the market and creating a product to satisfy that need. This type of thinking requires you to translate a need or desire of the customer into a business proposition, then turn the proposition into a product / service for the customer.
According to Nine Sigma 80% of big companies plan to increase innovation budgets in 2015 http://www.ninesigma.com/blog/bloinc/2014/12/the-results-are-in-findings-from-a-new-survey-on-innovation and the designers / engineers / innovators that embed design thinking into their practice will be the ones to capitalize on this opportunity. To truly innovate you have to create a hypothesis based on what you see, not just customer feedback, because sometimes customers don't know what they want. Henry Ford said it best: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” [Henry Ford]
For a more detailed, but simple explanation of design thinking check out the video below: