In the third in a series of blog posts looking at how to bring a new product to market, Teddington MD James Henderson discusses the importance of seeking expert advice.


Now we know what we are going to do and the rules within which we have to work it’s time to find the people who can help.

Let’s start with a glimpse of the blindingly obvious.

Technology moves on quickly. Product development must therefore move quickly to maintain a competitive advantage. This means that we, as development engineers, must also move quickly.

However, what does this really mean?

Constraining the thought solely to the development process, I believe it means that we, as a development partner, need a selfless operating model whereby our competitive advantage directly translates into a competitive advantage that our customers can exploit.

To be clear, I do not believe this is about price. Being the cheapest at anything always means you are in a race to the lowest of margins with your competitors. This is about being ahead of the rest.

To do this, we must acknowledge that we cannot be experts at everything. A development partner is no different, but I would certainly expect them to be a genuine expert at something and as stated previously – that something must be tangible). 

Find a development partner who has relevant expertise. Or better still, find one who can come to the table with a piece of the puzzle already developed and proven.

That expertise (or product) is the intellectual property that you’re seeking to exploit. This is the one and only reason you should speak with them and it therefore forms the basis of a real partnership.

The next time you’re sitting around the boardroom and someone asks the question: "Why don't we just employ some electronics engineers and do it ourselves in-house?"  The answer should be simple: "Because they (our potential development partners) know something we don't. Even if we had some engineers, they will still do it better than we could.”

If your development partner does not provide you with the feeling that the above statement is true, then you are probably talking to the wrong people.


Read the next blog in this series - examining the production process or read the previous post entitled how to engage a design and manufacturing partner