Learner (Tekedia Mini-MBA): With reference to the table on Innovation Process (Chapter 8), how does one empathize and define, when designing a niche product (which customers have never used and do not think they need presently but may need in the future)?
Tekedia Institute: Great innovators are usually called “visionaries”. That means, they can anticipate a future which does not exist. Steve Jobs and Elon Musk are two good examples in modern time: they see a future that does not exist and move people into it. From iPod to iPhone, Steve created a new world. Musk invented the electric car market when no one really asked for it. The key is observation and awareness of technology shifts. At the moment, Google wants to create a new product with at least one billion users. To do that, Google has to shift customer behaviour. Essentially, you create a world you want to have, and then have the ability to predict it.
Learner (Tekedia Mini-MBA): Assume I have two products, product A is a great invention that has been tested in the lab and works flawlessly but has a low market value. Therefore investors are not willing to invest in commercializing it. Product B, however is a marginal invention, with high market value. Investors are willing to invest in the commercialization. From the notes, is it right to say that product B is innovative whilst product A, the great invention, is not innovative?
Tekedia Institute: Yes