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Case Studies by Manuel Sosa

14 case studies

by Publication Date
published: 31 Aug 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Computer industry, Retail
  • Region: North America

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Abstract:
On 15 May 2001, the first Apple retail store was opened to the public at Tysons Corner, Virginia, and the same day a second store was opened in Glendale, California. With retail branded experiences virtually unknown in the industry at the time, the decision to launch the Apple retail programme was greeted with scepticism. However, within the first week they welcomed 7,700 visitors, with sales of almost $600,000 – testimony to its undoubtable success – and went on to roll out another 24 stores.
Fifteen years on, there are over 450 Apple stores globally, with higher sales per square foot – $5009 – than any other retail location in the United States. Even today, people still wonder what made them so successful and how it can be replicated.
Having successfully designed a brand-defining experience for Apple retail that created immense value, Eight Inc. had to decide how this level of success could be replicated for other potential clients. The case describes the relationship between Apple and Eight Inc., who were initially hired by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to work on first the MacWorld tradeshows. It traces the steps in the process, from establishing the case to each minute detail in the design process. The case describes how the team built not just a store but a breakthrough branded customer experience.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. To introduce and analyse a framework to design branded experiences. The case shows how designing a (retail) branded experience is different from designing a space or designing a service, and supersedes the latter. It also shows the business value that can be created through branded experiences.
2. The role of brand values in guiding the design principles for all the elements that contribute to the user experience. Understanding what those brand values are and how they are perceived by the target user is crucial in the design process.
3. A branded experience is the engagement of the user with the brand through the products/services, communication messages, the staff (and other users) behaviours, and the physical (and digital) space. The management of the experience design process requires an approach that combines modular and integrative principles. While the design of products/services, communication, behaviours and space are typically done separately by different disciplines, the integration of all these elements must be considered throughout the process so that they combine to create a holistic experience.
The design of the Apple retail stores was not just an example of a good experience design, it was a breakthrough in the computer, technology and retail space. This provides a rich context to discuss the key success factors behind creating an outstanding branded user experience. One was the level of deep and detailed involvement of top-level management throughout the process, critical in defining the brand values that guided the rest of the design process and enabling the team to push the boundaries.

Keywords:
Innovation, Design, Retail, Experience Design, Computing Industry, Organizational Transformation

published: 28 Aug 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Public sector
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The Ministry of Manpower in Singapore is designing a new employment pass processing centre. Working with a lean-thinking approach and using previous centers as a template, the project team proceeds to plan an updated version with faster processing times and improved interiors. Unexpectedly, plans grind to a halt as the civil servant in their line of reporting raises some crucial queries that call into question the very basis of the new centre’s lean and optimal design. Time is of the essence and the project head is now faced with two very tough options: proceed with minor incremental changes that may not meet expectations, or go for a complete redraft which requires time and capabilities that the team may not possess. Which will be his choice? The case stops here to allow a class discussion to evaluate the two options on how to proceed. This provides an ideal setting to discuss how to manage a new-to-the-firm design-thinking project.

Pedagogical Objectives:
After reading and analysing the case, students will be able to: • Evaluate the pros and cons of lean thinking vs. creative thinking methodologies. • Apply the steps and processes of creative thinking. • Examine the importance of excellence in user experience via the customer’s journey through the system. • Apply their understanding to consider the factors required to bring about transformation through design thinking in their own organizations. • Consider the need for excellence in public sector services, as in those for the private sector.

Keywords:
Innovation, Design Thinking, Public Sector, Organizational Transformation

published: 23 Jun 2014

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: Consumer electronic goods
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
This is a condensed version of the Handpresso case series #5841. It describes the development from concept to production of the world's first and smallest hand-held espresso machine. It explains the design process and how the product is brought to market. The CEO of Nielsen Innovation, Henrik Nielsen, decides not to license it as he has with other designs but to create a spin-off company for the Handpresso machine. The final chapter finds the team in a quandary, Henrik Nielsen’s untimely death leaves his wife at the helm. With two new machines ready for launch within a couple of months, it describes how the product is brought to market through partnerships and alliances. Having made a conscious decision to take this route, an agreement is signed with leading coffee roaster Lavazza, who in turn negotiates an exclusive agreement with the auto giant Fiat.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The overall objective is to show how to move from a “good idea” to a “good business” – in other words, how to capture value from an innovation and then build this through an alliance portfolio.

Keywords:
Product Innovation, Licensing, Retail, Partnerships, Alliances, Entrepreneurship, Product Design, Business Model Innovation

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published: 24 Mar 2014

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: consumer electronic goods
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Case A describes the development from concept to production of the world's first and smallest hand-held espresso machine. It shows the importance the role of prototyping plays in developing an innovative product, capturing the phases and decisions involved along the design path. The machine is ready for tooling and the CEO of Nielsen Innovation must decide to bring the product to market. Should it be licensed as they had done with other products they had designed? Or should they create a stand-alone business? Case B describes how and why the team started a spin-off company for the Handpresso machine, and managed to grow the business in a short space of time.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case reviews some simple principles in product innovation. It can be used to discuss the notion of "recombination" of existing ideas and how it leads to novel and useful products. Case A teaches the crucial role of prototyping to communicate ideas among stakeholders in the innovation process (not only within the development team but also with customers and potential partners). It highlights the role of prototyping in enabling design iterations (as an intrinsic part of the innovation process). Case B discusses the options available to capture the value of Handpresso. Taking a structured approach to "monetize" a good idea, it looks at the pros and cons of licensing vs. "do it yourself".

Keywords:
Product Innovation, Licensing, Retail, New Business Development, Protyping, Entrepreneurship, Product Design, Business Model Innovation

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published: 29 Nov 2011

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: consumer electronic goods
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Case A describes the development from concept to production of the world's first and smallest hand-held espresso machine. It shows the importance the role of prototyping plays in developing an innovative product, capturing the phases and decisions involved along the design path. The machine is ready for tooling and the CEO of Nielsen Innovation must decide to bring the product to market. Should it be licensed as they had done with other products they had designed? Or should they create a stand-alone business? Case B describes how and why the team started a spin-off company for the Handpresso machine, and managed to grow the business in a short space of time.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case reviews some simple principles in product innovation. It can be used to discuss the notion of "recombination" of existing ideas and how it leads to novel and useful products. Case A teaches the crucial role of prototyping to communicate ideas among stakeholders in the innovation process (not only within the development team but also with customers and potential partners). It highlights the role of prototyping in enabling design iterations (as an intrinsic part of the innovation process). Case B discusses the options available to capture the value of Handpresso. Taking a structured approach to "monetize" a good idea, it looks at the pros and cons of licensing vs. "do it yourself".

Keywords:
Product Innovation, Licensing, Retail, New Business Development, Protyping, Entrepreneurship, Product Design, Business Model Innovation

Related:

published: 29 Nov 2011

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: consumer electronic goods
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Case A describes the development from concept to production of the world's first and smallest hand-held espresso machine. It shows the importance the role of prototyping plays in developing an innovative product, capturing the phases and decisions involved along the design path. The machine is ready for tooling and the CEO of Nielsen Innovation must decide to bring the product to market. Should it be licensed as they had done with other products they had designed? Or should they create a stand-alone business? Case B describes how and why the team started a spin-off company for the Handpresso machine, and managed to grow the business in a short space of time.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case reviews some simple principles in product innovation. It can be used to discuss the notion of "recombination" of existing ideas and how it leads to novel and useful products. Case A teaches the crucial role of prototyping to communicate ideas among stakeholders in the innovation process (not only within the development team but also with customers and potential partners). It highlights the role of prototyping in enabling design iterations (as an intrinsic part of the innovation process). Case B discusses the options available to capture the value of Handpresso. Taking a structured approach to "monetize" a good idea, it looks at the pros and cons of licensing vs. "do it yourself".

Keywords:
Product Innovation, Licensing, Retail, New Business Development, Protyping, Entrepreneurship, Product Design, Business Model Innovation

Related:

published: 29 Mar 2011

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: Telecoms
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
This case study can be used as a stand-alone case or in conjunction with INSEAD case study Mimijumi". Frank Drummond the protagonist is a qualified medical doctor with vast experience in the healthcare sector. He leaves his native US to study for an MBA. Case A describes his first venture into product development. It traces the different stages Frank and the Bazile Telecom team go through in designing the actual phone hardware and the software, and developing the brand values. Just two years later the company is running successfully – a call centre has been set up and they have become a Mobile Virtual Network Operator. Frank, however, has “itchy” feet and is getting weary of the complexities of the telecom industry. He is tempted by a new product development venture proposed by a fellow doctor friend in the US, Bill.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1) From an entrepreneurship viewpoint, this case series emphasizes the value of focusing on a specific user?s need (e.g. mobile communication for elderly people; transitioning of breast feeding to bottle in babies). It shows the value of focusing on a niche market to develop an innovative solution. It demonstrates the many advantages to starting small and growing one step at a time by creating value in novel ways for a specific market segment. 2) From a product development process viewpoint, these cases helps students understand the challenge of evaluating and selecting product concepts - a critical stage in the concept development phase.

Keywords:
Brand Values, Telecoms, Niche Markets, Product Design and Development, Innovative Design, Start Up

published: 29 Mar 2011

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: Telecoms
published: 29 Mar 2011

  • Topic: Entrepreneurship
  • Industry: Baby bottles
  • Region: North America

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Abstract:
This case study can be used as a stand-alone case or in conjunction with INSEAD case study "Brazile Telecom". This case takes up Frank Drummond's story when he decides to leave the telecoms business and return to the US where he starts a new venture to develop a new type of baby bottle. He calls on the designer who he worked with on the one button phone. The case describes how they start by defining the brand values as the first step to develop a tangible product that reflect such values. The case then focuses on the development of an innovative baby bottle - looking at the different aspects involved in the concept, design, manufacture and marketing of an innovative baby bottle that will create value for both the parents and babies alike: from the textures, materials, shape, size of the bottle and teat as well as the packaging.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1) From an entrepreneurship viewpoint, this case series emphasizes the value of focusing on a specific user?s need (e.g. mobile communication for elderly people; transitioning of breast feeding to bottle in babies). It shows the value of focusing on a niche market to develop an innovative solution. It demonstrates the many advantages to starting small and growing one step at a time by creating value in novel ways for a specific market segment. 2) From a product development process viewpoint, these cases helps students understand the challenge of evaluating and selecting product concepts - a critical stage in the concept development phase.

Keywords:
Brand Values, Baby Bottles, Niche Markets, Concept Selection, Product Design, Start-Ups, Innovative Design, Concept Scoring

published: 01 Jul 2005

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Consulting (Transport Bank Telecom Healthcare)
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
This case describes how IDEO adapt its famed innovation process (developed to design new products) to the particularities of services and their design. The case series describes four service design projects to show how IDEO has developed and codified a series of design methods, which constitute a toolbox from which teams can pick and choose depending on the innovation project.

Keywords:
Innovation Management, New Product and Service Development, Brainstorming, Prototyping, Knowledge Brokering

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