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Winning Businesses in Product Development: The Critical Success Factors

Robert G. Cooper and Elko J. Kleinschmidt


What are the critical success factors that underlie excellent new product performance? Our benchmarking study was designed to uncover the drivers of performance by studying business units within corporations, and linking their new product performance to various practices. We measured performance in different ways, including profitability, success rates and percentage sales by new products. Some of the business units studied boasted superb performance; others had a more mediocre new product track record. By benchmarking against both the good and the bad, we were able to obtain much greater insights into the factors and practices that really discriminate between the top and poorer performers. In short, we were able to link specific practices to high performance