More Pain Points

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In an earlier post I wrote about the top pain point identified in Planview’s Fourth Product Portfolio Management Benchmark Study.  The number one pain point every year has been, “too many projects for our resources.” The second and third pain points have also been consistent year over year and they seem to represent an interconnected system of bad practices that cause problems in innovation.

The second top issue is, “not being able to drive innovation fast enough (missing time-to-market)” and the third is “decisions that go back and forth and get made late or ineffectively.” Do you think that these issues may be related to one another?

I see all three of these pain points as a failure of innovation governance. If we concentrated accountability for delivering innovation results into a single corporate executive, we would have someone to turn to that can address these issues. In most large organizations there are multiple functional stakeholders that must be aligned on the problem and work together on a solution. Too often, this does not happen. The role of the Chief Innovation Officer is to pull these constituencies together to make the difficult changes required to alleviate these challenges.

The year over year consistency in the identification of the top pain points in product portfolio management highlight the need for a new way of thinking about the problem. Process improvements and systems implementations will only address the symptoms. We need an organizational solution to deal with the structural barriers to improved innovation performance.

Let’s do something to change the results of this survey next year.