product innovation blog

Exploratory PD™


WHY a new way to develop products?

Many companies today utilize some form of a traditional phased-and-gated product development process, which originated more than 50 years ago. It hasn’t changed substantially since then. Over time, only incremental improvements have been made to these traditional processes, but despite continual evolution, they are not keeping pace with the needs of today’s fast-moving, globalized world.

We are very familiar with the traditional phased-and-gated methodology, and we have more than 30 years of combined experience in consulting with and training companies on how to use it. In fact, it’s our familiarity with the phased-and-gated process that has enabled us to see how product development can be done differently.

This led us to developing a new product development process called Exploratory PD™ (ExPD). We are writing a book on this new process, using a fictional story to illustrate how it would apply to product development teams.

Our book should be published by December 2015.

Read the Preface to Exploratory PD™


Meet the Authors


What our reviewers have to say:

“ExPD is pretty exciting. I think ExPD will be an important contribution to the product development world. It integrates ideas from lots of the emerging thinking about product development.” Engineering Executive

“The process looks like an improvement in many ways over the traditional stage-gate process. As with most new approaches there will be some early adopters and some that hang back to wait and see.” R&D Manager for Advanced Development in Mid-Sized Medical Device Company

“I wanted to let you know that I did read through this and thought it was great! I like the story format. That along with the fact that the individuals are easy to identify with makes it all come to life.” Director of Innovation, Fortune 500 Medical Device Company

“I applaud your focus on integrating portfolio decisions with project decisions, and on constant attention to risk management. A practical link between portfolio decisions and project decisions is important to the business. In a pilot of this process, our upper management would want to see how “management by exception” would be run differently than a typical program.” Engineer Executive in Fortune 500 Industrial Products Company

 “Overall, I thought it was a great read and at times, I felt like I was listening to myself preaching to my team. Thought the overall message was spot on. “Risks drive the project instead of the process driving the project” was perfect. Though the gate review process is sound in some cases, I continue to be amazed at how much time is spent putting together PowerPoints, standard project updates, etc….” Director of R&D, Fortune 500 Medical Device Company

“I think your use of the story is very effective and adds to the “technical” content. I’m usually skeptical about stories in business books, I see that it works well for you. It gives you the ability to address common doubts and concerns about the experimental methods without distracting from the flow of your main ideas.”  Engineering Executive


Strategy 2 Market helps companies increase growth and decrease product development complexity.

For more information or to speak with one of our consultants, please contact Mary Drotar at 312-212-3144 or [email protected]

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