Emergic: Rajesh Jain's Blog

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Sometimes Success Begins at Failure

April 10th, 2004 · No Comments

[via Veer] From a HBS Working Knowledge article by Henry Chesbrough: “Projects that appear to be duds may have unintended upsidesViagra started life and failed as a drug for hypertension. Here are tips for turning negative test results into gold.”

The management of false negatives is much more complex. False negatives are not only often difficult to recognize, but there is also no single, sure-fire way to deal with them. Meanwhile, the downside to ignoring them is virtually impossible to predict. Nevertheless, history has shown it can be a costly mistake to miss a false negative, and there are indeed steps that companies can take to mitigate the likelihood of their development.

So, what processes might cope with false negatives?

– Review all canceled projects
– Expose projects to outsiders
– Seek external licenses
– Spin technologies off
– Seek external VC partners

Tags: Entrepreneurship

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