Your Innovation Podcast. This is the 37th episode of the Driving Eureka! Podcast. The science of innovation success: reduce to expand product offerings; the value of doing less; and the value of breaks. Subscribe to learn how to Find Filter and Fast Track Big Ideas.
The Driving Eureka! Podcast – The Science of Innovation Success Part 4
Reduce to Expand Product Offerings
Reduce to Expand Product Offerings – Cut Your Product Line!
How doing less Can Help You Win More
Taking Short Breaks to Improve Productivity
Tripp: [00:00:00] In Part 4 of The Science of Innovation Success we’ll talk about how to reduce to expand product offerings. The value of doing less than the value of breaks.
Tripp: [00:00:12] The Driving Eureka! podcast with Doug Hall and Tripp Babbitt is sponsored by Eureka! Ranch the ranch specializes in helping companies find filter and fast track big ideas.
Tripp: [00:00:30] Episode 37 of the science of innovation success and the three topics we’re going to cover this week are reduce to expand product offerings which I have no idea what that means of value of doing less and the value of breaks all very cryptic types of writings here Doug.
Tripp: [00:00:51] What do you mean reduce to expand product.
Doug: [00:00:56] I should give you the quiz. It’s a quiz question.
Doug: [00:00:58] Oh no significant overall sales growth can be realized if A you cut your product line by as much as 50 percent or b you expand your product line to service all customers.
Doug: [00:01:12] Now is where we need the Jeopardy theme.
Tripp: [00:01:15] Well only because you said reduce to expand product offerings to go with A.
Doug: [00:01:23] That’s right. Cut your product line and I’ve got a pile of stories on this one here.
Doug: [00:01:29] And this is a there’s all kinds of research on this and we just we we don’t do this we expand it we expand it we expand it and there was in one case it was an Internet retailer they cut the worst selling 54 percent of the products across 42 categories and they got an eleven percent overall growth in sales which is just absolutely amazing. And and I’ve I’ve seen this I was down in Mexico with a guy that makes kitchen tiles and he cut half of his inventory and sales grew.
Doug: [00:02:07] And and it seems counter intuitive but the fact of the matter is as most many times when we keep adding things they’re cannibalizing and I’m just talking about sales. I’m not talking about the bottom line. The bottom line profits are even bigger. But what happens is is we cannibalize and cannibalizing cannibalize ourselves. And and so we end up with needless complexity as it’s called you know bureaucracy and so forth.
Tripp: [00:02:34] You know it’s interesting the first time I think I saw this was on a show called The Profit with a guy by the name of Marcus Lemonis AND I THINK HE HE’S LIKE THE CEO OF CAMPING WORLD BUT HE’S ON TV And one of the first things he does when he goes in to restaurants was where I saw it as they and I have these expansive menus you know up on the on a blackboard or a whiteboard in a restaurant. And it was always the first thing he noticed that was the first thing he said oh my gosh you know you got 60 different items on here. You know what. You do all 60 well now so. So he’d always cut cut down the size of the menu in order to get it. But that works across all businesses. But what you’re saying from your.
Doug: [00:03:21] Yeah. And it’s not just quality and productivity and profits. It’s sales. You’re confusing the bejesus out of customers.
Tripp: [00:03:31] That makes sense.
Doug: [00:03:33] That’s and that takes us to our second and related finding this time how doing less can help you win more lose less and make more money with your business. And I call it. Do one thing great and this a famous study it was done in a California grocery store where customers were offered free tastes of 24 flavors of jam and another leg of the test. Only six flavors of jam were offered when they offered twenty four flavors that you haven’t imagined. Twenty four flavors two percent of those walking by the display made a purchase. When they offered just six flavors twelve percent by. A 600 percent increase. So when you do less you’re seen as an expert and you increase your odds of success. And and the same is true in your career in life. You know when you focus and have deep expertise in an area you’re going to do more. And you know. So what are you going to be greater now.
Doug: [00:04:42] And and this is also part of this thing is you know this multitasking we talk about these days. Oh yeah I can watch the iPhone and the computer and 17 things at one time. It’s not possible it’s not working. No it’s not working. No no the faster the University of Michigan found this that multitasking not only lowers efficiency and creates errors in the tasks perform but it also compromised memory causes back pain and give people the flu and indigestion even hurts teeth and gums. Recent studies show so you know focus focus focus. What are you going to be great at. What are you going to be great at.
Tripp: [00:05:22] You know it’s interesting in some of the. A lot of there’s a lot of things neuroscientists disagree about one thing that I found that they do agree about is this thing I’m multitasking the brain cannot do multiple things of once it it is not physically possible for your brain to focus on multiple things that it has to do one thing. There’s a switching TIME BETWEEN THAT THING AND THE NEXT THING YOU THERE THE BRAIN just cannot process five things at once it’s not possible they can’t even you can’t even do two things. I can do one thing that’s interesting. Very good cool.
Doug: [00:06:00] And our last one for this week is you can improve your problem solving ability by taking even a very short break. So remember we talked about sleeping.
Tripp: [00:06:08] Oh yeah.
Doug: [00:06:09] Well a study in the creativity Research Journal finds that if when you’re really stuck instead of going run run run.
Doug: [00:06:18] You let me drive my way through this thing step back and escape really jumpstart your your brain. One hundred four undergraduate students were randomly assigned to five groups. They were then told to compute the area of two German geometric figures found in a complex drawing. These are called an insight puzzle. As soon as they came to an impasse each group was given one of three break lines long short and none. Plus one or two levels of activity during the break either are demanding or a non demanding task. The results showed that any break produced an improved performance. Solving the problem. OK.
Doug: [00:06:58] Because you know oftentimes when we get in the middle of a problem we make a collection of assumptions. A plus B is connected to the you know the wrist bones connected to the ankle bone whatever it is. And when we take a break we come back and look at those things fresh again and we can find the flaws in our mistake is because some assumptions that we’ve built in are getting us to a mess.
Tripp: [00:07:22] So. So it’s basically once you’ve had the break you you’re stepping back and you’re being able to see some of the mistakes you made.
Doug: [00:07:29] That’s right.
Tripp: [00:07:30] Okay. That’s interesting. So how does diversity fit into this this this does this crossover into that as far as Yeah I do a diverse group.
Doug: [00:07:40] Yeah. The diverse groups going to help you. I mean it’s obviously going to help you if you’re able to listen but still at the same time the group will come to a consensus and we’ll now build a foundation that can be a faulty foundation. The deal is focus. Do one thing great. And when you do get caught in a thing. Take a break take a break and approach it fresh.
Tripp: [00:08:03] Makes sense.
Doug: [00:08:04] ’til next week.
Tripp: [00:08:07] And get your Driving Eureka! book where you can learn more fun facts and stories that can help you and your innovation journey.
Tripp: [00:08:17] Thank you for listening to the Driving Eureka! podcast. This podcast is part of the innovation Engineering Institute. Innovation engineering is a new field of academic study and leadership science. Its mission is to change the world by enabling innovation by everyone everywhere every day. resulting in increased speed and decreased risk. To learn more about on campus off campus live and online courses visit. innovation engineering dot org.