Rethinking of Linak’s business development process

In cooperation with Michael N. Wilkens and Strategyzer, Linak wished to rethink the company’s process for product and business development to reduce uncertainty and increase the return on investments in new growth.

LINAK is an engineering company which today is very successful in its sale of electric actuator solutions for hospital beds and height adjustable desks.

Louise Falster-Sørensen is the Director of the Homeline segment. Her segment designs systems for products used at home such as adjustable beds and electronic adjustable armchairs.

Louise Falster-Sørensen’s team benefitted from Strategyzer’s tools for user-driven design and Value Proposition Design. “And this is why we chose to use these tools in a new development project – as a form of pilot. We saw how well it worked and how much sense it made so we contacted Strategyzer subsequently in order to have it introduced to the entire organization.”

Linak, Quote 1

A new approach to product development

Another important reason why Louise Falster-Sørensen contacted Strategyzer was that LINAK, like many other organizations, several times had used resources and energy in developing a new product which finally turned out not to satisfy our sales expectations. After a long perfecting process, the product was launched, however, without generating the expected excitement and willingness to buy from its customers.

“Too many times, we have spent much time and money on making things which everybody thought was a good idea and which at first seemed like a good solution for our customers. But when we launched the product, not quite as many as we imagined wanted to buy it," she explains. With Strategyzer’s tools handy, there is a chance that we can get better at avoiding making such errors.

Louise Falster-Sørensen is referring to the design method which Michael N. Wilkens and Strategyzer is covering in a Masterclass. This design method is basically about showing how you test and verify your business ideas and thereby minimizing the risk that the customers do not want to buy the product or service.

Linak, Quote 2

Part of everyday life

The Masterclass for LINAK was performed by Michael N. Wilkens from PinPointers. Approx. 35 employees participated in the Masterclass, including all segment managers, selected project managers, heads of development, etc.

“In my team, we benefit from the toolbox from Strategyzer all the time. We use it every time we want to have an understanding of something which perhaps did not turn out quite they way we imagined,” she tells. “We also use it for all new projects we initiate. We start with Business Model Canvas and Value Proposition Canvas. In addition, we plan to have it included as a mandatory element in our milestones. So when you ask for money – meaning when we approach our product committee with a wish to start up a new development project – this part becomes mandatory to show that you have understood the needs of the customers and the market in order to minimise the risk of the project.”

Linak, Quote 3

A common language

What Louise Falster-Sørensen appreciates most of all is the fact that they are now capable of discussing complex issues. “We have obtained a common language,” she explains. “That we are referring to the same things and make an effort with the same things to justify an investment – this is valuable.”

It also means a lot to her to have clear expectations regarding testing and proving the ideas which arise during the product development.

“We also pay much more attention to how we very early in the process can test whether the ideas are good in order to reduce risk," she says. “We may have had a tendency to produce projects at a far too completed level before we tested it. We had practically finished them.”

In this way, Business Model Canvas, Value Proposition Canvas and the design methods have minimized the risk during the product development. They have learned how to make small experiments and gain much knowledge early in the project allowing even more products to be a success in the future.

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