Is motivation key to product development?

Week 7 of 8 – The next Decade in Transportation

December 16, 2019

Is motivation key to product and service development in mobility? Does your company have a relentless, obsessive, passionate focus on product and services? Is innovation a core tenant of your company? When you hear the word innovation, does a person or company come to mind? The names of innovators become legendary in our society. Innovators start their companies’ with nothing more than a dream and a team. Larger companies have the challenge of engraining innovation into their processes, not relying on one individual. McKinsey Insight states that larger existing companies who crave innovation need to focus on collaboration, strategy and launch teams to curate a clear advantage over those that do not. Why is it that large companies with all of the resources in the world find it difficult to compete against resourceless start-ups? This blog will explore if motivation is the key to mobility product and service development.

Timing

The best ideas in the world only work if they hit the market at the right time. Many leaders see massive opportunity in the next decade through the uncertainty of change. Change in mobility and transportation gives opportunity to monetize on near and long-term solutions. If history repeats itself, longer term visions will evolve from the successes and failures that occur near term. Why is this important to your product strategy? There are two potential models that work in a marketplace with a high probability of change; first to market or fast follower models. Choosing one of these necessitates an understanding of your companies risk tolerance. This is also important for your team set-up. Does your company have a strategic product direction between first to market or fast follower? Are you focused on long-term or near term solutions?

Market

How will your company differentiate itself to remain competitive in the next decade? Mass and luxury markets may have different answers to that question. Mass market mobility products and solutions are moving in a direction that looks more like appliances / devices. Technology integration, price and quality are differentiators to future mass market mobility solutions. Luxury, on the other hand, may move their products and services towards experience and brand to differentiate, assuming they share the same base technologies. Experience is curated through things that customers touch and feel along with seamless technology interface. Mobility plays a large role in connecting the luxury tribe to the environments they work, live and play. These are environments they choose to interact with, more so than need to. What innovation do you believe will change mass market and luxury mobility solutions in the next decade?

Motivation

Agile methodologies implemented by authentic leaders are taking over the marketplace in tech and mobility development. These teams will drive innovation in mobility solutions over the next decade. Why do similar teams perform differently in start-ups versus established companies? I believe it derives from motivation. Most employees at start-ups have motivation built into them from the day one on their job. Their roadmap is clear where successes and failures emerge quickly. This tests their resolve and commitment to success. Established companies looking for innovation need to compete with start-ups to keep their edge in the next decade. The challenge for these companies is to balance growing their core business while at the same time creating teams who innovate and ensure relevance of their future product strategy. Innovation strategies will require them to strongly question their core business. How can you do this without creating a toxic culture? Established company leaders need to find balance motivating core and innovation teams while at the same time leveraging their size and scale. Start-up leaders need to take advantage of their unified teams motivation and ability to outmaneuver larger established companies. Do you agree that motivation is the key to both established and start-up companies success in the next decade?

I believe the time is right for companies to strongly challenge themselves more than they ever have in the past. Leaders need to explore moving their company to a development pace that may be uncomfortable to their present model. Leaders that do this without burning out their teams will have an advantage in mobility solutions. This is a big step for most leaders as it is fraught with internal and external risk. Are you motivated? Are you prepared to take part in the potential upside of one of the largest market shifts ever to a world of mobility? Will your team compete against companies that run through brick walls to win?

Thank you so much for taking time to read this weeks’ blog. I’m going to publish the eighth and final blog of this series in a few weeks. Hope you are preparing for a fantastic holiday season with friends and family! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts, questions and comments!

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