Does business commercialization figure into your strategic plan for the coming year? Perhaps you participated in a new product development initiative, whether it was business commercialization of your startup, launch of a new marketing and sales program, or design and implementation of an engineered solution.
You know the feeling when the chemistry between your team is there. Everyone has bought in, there are no egos present, and “all systems are go” – sometimes literally.
That type of feeling is palpable. That type of collaborative team work becomes part of your professional DNA forevermore. You seek those types of professional relationships and outcomes, moving forward.
Quality is a key component towards all systems being “go,” whether consciously acknowledged or not during the course of the business commercialization initiative. When you are privileged to work on these successful, hard-working, cross-functional, collaborative teams it is grueling yet effortless. You all are focused towards a common goal. There is synergy between all of you; you have each other’s backs.
The Quality input-throughput-output in your business commercialization team is almost magical.
These types of business commercialization teams are rare. It’s almost as if the stars are aligned. It’s a combination of the right folks at the right place and time on the right project. You refuse to take “no” for an answer, and find insightful means to use those “no’s” as the impetus for your successful outcome.
I had the opportunity of working on just this type of team, early on in my career in the pharmaceutical industry. In a sense, our team was a commercial startup. We had a multi-disciplinary team, we found creative ways to identify and incorporate internal resources, we challenged each other, we supported each other, we led when necessary and we followed when appropriate.
Our business commercialization team was a living breathing example of my mantra: “Depending on where we sit around the table, we see the same things – differently.”
This team was able to be proactive and anticipatory of not only where the current marketplace was, but what the customer of the future might consider when purchasing our offering. We created a product that was robust and enduring, so much so that my colleagues from competitor companies called me to ask: “how on earth did you pull that product development and launch off?”
To this day, our offering remains a key category competitor.
Why? Our R&D, manufacturing and operations members led with Quality. That consideration provided breadth and depth to all of our commercialization efforts. Our continual focus on Quality throughout every aspect of new product development, from ideation to post launch support, provided the guiding light for us all.
That’s not a bad way of getting introduced to the concept of Quality. Quality is powerful and enduring, even if you think you come from the non-technical side of the conversation. The next time you are asked to sit around the business table with folks from various disciplines, focus on Quality to get the conversation going. It won’t let you down.
Babette N. Ten Haken, President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC, catalyzes business transition, startup growth, and professional development. She works with non-traditional sellers, engineers, manufacturers, and technical startups.