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Creating Breakthrough Products: Innovation from Product Planning to Program Approval Hardcover – November 1, 2001

ISBN-13: 007-6092013679 ISBN-10: 0139696946 Edition: First Edition

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; First Edition edition (November 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0139696946
  • ISBN-13: 978-0139696947
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,600,819 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Creating Breakthrough Products identifies key factors associated with successful innovation, and presents an insightful and comprehensive approach to building products and services that redefine markets -- or create new ones. Learn to identify Product Opportunity Gaps that can lead to enormous success; control and navigate the "Fuzzy Front End" of the product development process; and leverage contributions from diverse product teams -- while staying relentlessly focused on your customer's values and lifestyles.

About the Author

JONATHAN CAGAN is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. His work focuses on the early stages of product development with emphasis on engineering design, interdisciplinary collaborations, formal design synthesis, and computational design tools. Dr. Cagan is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and a registered Professional Engineer.

 

CRAIG M. VOGEL is a Professor in the School of Design at Carnegie Mellon University. His areas of expertise include product design, product aesthetics, design history, team management, and design patent litigation. Professor Vogel is a Fellow, and former President, of the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA).

 

Professors Cagan and Vogel have collaborated for close to a decade in teaching, research, and consulting in the area of integrated new product development. For more information see www.creatingbreakthroughproducts.com


More About the Author

Jonathan Cagan is the George Tallman and Florence Barrett Ladd Professor in Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Globally known for his rigorous and effective approach to product innovation, Cagan works extensively in research on innovation processes and tools, teaching and leading innovation teams, corporate consulting, and speaking engagements on the topic of innovation.

With a focus on product strategy and innovation, Cagan has worked with a variety of companies ranging from Fortune 100 to entrepreneurial start-ups such as Apple, P&G, GlaxoSmithKline, RedZone Robotics, Navistar International Truck, and Nissan. He also co-directs the Master of Product Development program at Carnegie Mellon. He is co-author of three books on innovation: Creating Breakthrough Products, The Design of Things to Come, and Built to Love.

Visit JonathanCagan.com to learn more.

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By John C. Dunbar on March 3, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Although I agree with several of the concerns by other reviewers, I recommend this book for product developers because it offers usable information that can improve the liklihood of success for a new product.
First my concerns:
- There's too many unrelated topics,
- There's too many acronyms,
- It reads like a textbook, it's a little hard to read as it feels disjointed somewhat.
Now the things that I like and recommend:
- Great reviews of successful product case studies (I particularly liked the OXO product one),
- Although trite, their 2x2 matrix was quite interesting,
- Their emphasis on how to put "style" into your product (this is not really covered in many other books),
- Their concept of Product Opportunity Gaps (POG, whoops there's another acronym).
I think the authors, who are quite astute, should rewrite this book. I recommend that they boil down the material and rewrite the book thinking of it as an instruction book from them to some MBA/Engineer (Hewlitt/Packard) who's working out of his garage on some new product. They should not see this as a college text, or some book that's a supplementary reading for college. They have great material and great ideas, but it needs focused. They can completely drop Chapter 6 on Teams. Their Chapter 7 on Understanding User Needs seemed weak. They should drop the case studies in Chapters 8 and 9 and integrate that great material into the core text -- otherwise it's just too repetitive.
There was an excellent article about the authors in Fast Company magazine, July 2002. page 123. "How to Design the Perfect Product". I recommend reading that article as well.
These smart guys from Carnegie Mellon's design school have a unique approach to "Value is all about fulfilling fantasy" and their methodology for getting that into your product.
John Dunbar
Sugar Land, TX
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Jean-Claude Balland on February 1, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Cagan and Vogel are addressing a critically important topic. Isn't that every company and entrepreneur's dream to actually create breakthrough products? Are they going to find the formula in this book? Well, yes and no.
The good news is that there are some interesting insights on what makes breakthrough products, like the importance of providing compelling usefulness, usability, and desirability features, or the key role of style, technology, and branding in the success of new products, or the need for an integrated new product development process.
Can you read this book and start applying these principles? The answer is no. To start with, the authors resort to the universal 2x2 business tool to unveil their magic formula: the combination of style and technology is the way to create breakthroughs because these two attributes create value. It is what they call "moving to the upper right" or to the "value quadrant". This is a very simplistic if not erroneoous view of how value is created. This might be true for consumer items where value is mostly in the psychological and emotional realm but it definitely does not help most industrial and business applications where value is more in the economic, solution, and service realm.
The author presents a list of value opportunities that are supposed to be universal but they are brought without any justification. Why does adventure, independence, or security make the list and not other emotions? Isn't that the key to success to fist find what the potential customers really value before jumping to conclusions instaed of trying to fit a model on reality?
Central to breakthrough products is the importance of user-centered research and product development.
Read more ›
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 21, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read this volume in a weekend. It's a pleasant read (though it wanes a bit in the final chapters). It *does* fill, to a modest extent, a niche typically only addressed by relevant journals, conferences, online dialogues, etc. Despite the authors' apparent experience in applied research and design (in the business world, not the classroom), ultimately, IMHO, the book fails to correctly address (nor reflect experience with) the nitty-gritty, messy nature of designing products in the real-world (or the environs within which they operate). It also fails to seriously address anything about human experience, and how the most successful products on the market, and in history (e.g., Da Vinci, Ben Franklin, Edison, Robert Jarvik), almost always "rose from the field research and observation" ashes. Innovation breakthroughs do not occur by assembling a group of smart people, sitting around a table. Product breakthroughs occur when these smart people leave the office and learn from current and potential customers. Perhaps I'm mistaken and if I took a class or workshop with these fellows, I'd learn otherwise. Positive is that they propose a couple of simple strategic planning / conceptual models. However, I would have much rather read (and discussed) such models via a 10-page journal article or 2-hour conference break-out session. These models are insufficient to build an entire book upon. To their credit, there really isn't any contemporary book that takes this challenge on (and likewise eeks by, or otherwise), though I might suggest Kelley's "Art of Innovation," and even foundational readings such as Pine & Gilmore ("Markets of One," etc.), an occasional reprint from the IDSA Journal "Innovation", or even classic Peter Drucker or Tom Peters (who in their own unique ways address the all-important business and human context & culture from which product innovation can and will emerge).
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