Business Improvement Vs. Product Improvement
It is interesting that many people in business do not see the relationship of a product to a business. As basic as this concept is to the viability of a company, many business professionals do not make this simple correlation. Let’s be specific…a product is not a business. A product needs a business or organization but the product does not make a business.
A business, in return, can not exist without a product (or service). An organization must have a product on which it operates and organizes itself around. By definition and organization is organized to provide a product to a population. Without a product a business does not know how to organize to operate. The basic premise is without a product there is no business and without a business there is no product.
The correlation is a product or service is viable when the product or service is operationalized in a profitable manner. It is a balance between serving a customer with a product or service while generating a profit by the organization’s operation. Business improvement is not improving the product or service, (which is product development), but improving the operation of getting the product to the customer. This does include sales, development and delivery of the product to the customer.
People can have the best idea for a new product or service but if you cannot build a business operation for it, it is like you did not have the idea at all. One must be able to provide a profitable operation for a product or service or the organization will not maintain viability and may cease to exist completely. This concept is the first step in understanding the goals on reality based business improvement. If you want to build a better mouse trap then you want to focus on product development. If you want to build a better mechanism to deliver the the mouse trap to your customer, then that is business improvement. To improve you must know your focus, either product or business. Business improvement has separate yet interrelated goals, objectives and achievements but the difference must be understood to achieve success in overall improvement.