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TEI 160: How LEGO used a low-risk, high-value approach to product management

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Global Product Management Talk is pleased to bring you the next episode of...

The Everyday Innovator with host Chad McAllister, PhD.

The podcast is all about helping people involved in innovation and managing products become more successful, grow their careers, and STANDOUT from their peers.

About the Episode:

Fundamentally, product managers should be driving success for their organization. We do that by providing customers value. The source of that value may be, and perhaps should be, closer to our core capabilities than is often thought. The toy company LEGO found this to be true, only after being on the brink of bankruptcy. Other companies have also discovered this principle, which is something my guest calls innovating near the core.

My guest this week, David Robertson, explored this in a book-long case study of LEGO, called Brick by Brick:  How LEGO Rewrote the Rules of Innovation and Conquered the Global Toy Industry. In his recent book, The Power of Little Ideas: A Low-Risk, High-Reward Approach to Innovation, he studies other companies who have won their market using a similar approach.

David is a Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, where he teaches Innovation and Product Design. He is also the host of the weekly radio show on SiriusXM called “Innovation Navigation,” where he interviews world-renowned thought leaders about the management of innovation.

In the discussion, you’ll learn:

  1. Why almost all of LEGO’s product innovation efforts resulted in millions of dollars lost.
  2. What action turned LEGO around and produced growth.
  3. How companies have innovated close to their core to create market success.

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