Why the World Class R&D Institute...

…in an industry headed toward collapse?

Because luck happens to the prepared.

If we conclude today’s industries cannot be saved, that they are on an unstoppable trajectory toward becoming Phase 3 industries, then we need to have in place the raw materials for when a critical mass of financiers and entrepreneurs are ready to try new approaches. After the current industrial model collapses (i.e., industry moves to Phase 3), what money remains (any value remaining) will look for a new home – quickly. World Class R&D is the realtor.

The World Class R&D Institute provides the strategy, the principles, the operating models and the management tools needed for any R&D-centric industry. World Class R&D Institute aficionados know what it takes to foster high levels of effectiveness in R&D: effectiveness as measured in getting blockbuster+ products out the door. And now we more clearly define what it is you’ve learned at World Class R&D: the blueprint for developing new organizational forms suitable for an R&D-centric industry.

The World Class R&D Institute envisions a Funding Agent+ who builds new organizational forms over and over. This funding agent (e.g., Big Corporation, Big Money) scans the marketplace for new Science Platforms and teams. This funding agent selects teams and gives them the funding (minimal) and time (optimal) needed to design and implement their own new organizational form (during pre-game+). Most importantly, this funding agent gives teams insights and experience from across many organizational forms, so they can select ingredients best suited for their own success.

Only six of the original eleven Biotech firms in the Powell & Sandholtz study are still alive, and only three remain as independent firms. Many either stumbled on the exploitation of the science, or as was often the case, many Biotech firms were forced to sell their ‘crown jewels’ to Big Pharma in order to obtain funding. . World Class R&D was deliberately scoped on developing consumer products: products and services where individual pieces are packaged for sale to consumers. This ‘fully integrated’ approach to R&D allows Investible Units+ to be capable in both their science and in their ability to self-fund the pursuit of that science. Their organizational form must show potential for launching multiple blockbuster products. But it also must show the ability to launch even more sub-blockbuster+ products during the interim in order to fund pursuit of these discontinuous blockbusters.

Look upon the Institute as a proving ground for new industrial R&D organizational forms. The Institute was founded on very solid behavior fundamentals+. This behavioral analysis climbed back up to management practices, operating models, and ultimately to organizational forms. It’s a complete package, but it’s only one variation. New firms get to leverage the thinking of the Institute, in all its glorious detail, as they come up with new organizational forms suited to their own needs. For the first time, for innovative R&D, individuals have access to a comprehensive reference source for building and testing new organizational forms.1

Editor's Picks for January, 2011

  • 1. Similar to efforts in the (micro)economics field, we stepped back to look in general at different behaviors prevalent in industrial R&D. We can’t change behaviors so what’s the best way to organize these behaviors to increase R&D productivity. We know certain behaviors increase productivity so we encourage those behaviors, and vice versa. We look at the behavioral tendencies of groups of individuals and use those tendencies to define our work practices. You don’t always get it right. Creative individuals once they start to understand the rules will change their behaviors to take advantage of the rules to seek their own personal agendas. This thinking too has been built into the World Class R&D approach (i.e., the self-referential problem).
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