Rocket Fuel

Finally the big moment has come—the moment when engineering hands off a new product to marketing to be launched into the world. This momentous occasion arrives with an almost audible sigh of relief. You know—the Aaahhhhh Moment. It’s been a long and dusty road, but at last our work is done! Aaahhhhhh! Where’s the beer and chips?

Woo hooo!! Except wait a sec. This launch moment—the great handoff, should really not be happening.

Let’s back up and get some context.

In the prototypical new product development (NPD) stage-gate process, launch is viewed as the LAST stage. But of course, it’s the FIRST stage in the market lifecycle. It’s the last-first stage, and it’s pivotal.

And it goes awry when it’s handled as an abrupt handoff from engineering to marketing—a handoff that comes with a drop in intensity and intention, as though all the real work has been done, and all marketing has to do is communicate it.

There has been no coordination, no alignment, no shared knowledge or lockstep progress from early on. So that handoff is not a smooth passing of the baton. There’s a loss of momentum, and lack of direction and focus.

The alternative? Marketing and product development work hand-in-hand to develop products conceived from the beginning to fill real needs in the market, delivering optimal opportunity for success.

Ready to get your team’s working in lockstep? We’d love to help.

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