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2 min reading time
Our company mantra for over the past 20 years is “fail early, fail often, but fail smart.”
The process of designing medical devices – or creating anything new or innovative – involves learning through both failure and observation.
Dr. Lyle Berkowitz recently wrote an interesting article on physicians and innovation. One of his main themes is to “fail often;” he also encourages physicians to put a high priority on the power of observation.
This hits home with our company’s experience, since we regularly work with physicians to develop and design new, innovative medical devices.
The best innovation includes a good observation process. In other words, just watching and taking notes is not an adequate process and can lead to wrong conclusions—perhaps even more frequent failure.
A good observation process should enable you to squeeze real meaning from the data that has direct impact on the design of the most innovative solutions.
Strangely enough, there are areas that you want to fail in, like trying to identify which of several therapy methodologies works best or discovering hazards and risks that are show-stoppers while still in the early mock-up phase. A failure then is actually a huge success.
Why? Because there is still time to do something about it without a product recall! But there are areas you don’t want to fail in, like providing several possible solutions that potentially meet the needs.
Overall, using good research techniques and supportive development methodologies is the big key to success for product development projects.
Editor’s note: I thought they did a nice job with the video below. Give a look.
About the Author: Medical Devices Group Advisory Board member and medical device design company founder Tom KraMer is passionate about making ideas become reality. You can find him at Kablooe Design helping his customers develop the latest and greatest products or speaking at various industry events on the topic of innovation and optimizing the product development process.
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