In this third episode of our launching a product series, we jump into the concept of Open Innovation. Large companies are open to receiving ideas from outside of their companies like never before. Why?
Consumers have developed an insatiable appetite for new products. This consumer need has created space for product developers around the world to explore quicker ways of getting their products into the marketplace.
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Hence, the concept of Open Innovation was conceived by inventor and author of One Simple Idea, Stephen Keys, and his co-founding partner of Invent Right and today’s guest, Andrew Krauss. Andrew explains the concept in today’s episode. How do you come up with a simple idea? What kind of coaching do product designers need? How did Andrew determine he and Stephen needed to develop a product coaching business? What are Andrew’s views on education and real-life experience, especially in the field of marketing?
In our second mentoring conversation, Andrew and I go over Two Formulas that can help a product designer determine whether to license or manufacture. The formula to help a product designer figure out what is right for them is outlined in One Simple Idea as:
1. Simple idea + existing technology + 3 or more players in the market = license.
2. Unique idea+ new technology + 1 or 2 major players in market = manufacture.
Andrew has found that most inventors are not wired to run a manufacturing company. Second, if you are a one product manufacturing company, you can get bumped from the shelf in a retail store more easily than manufacturers who have multiple shelf products and categories. Licensing has many benefits for the product designer or inventor that just wants to keep inventing new products. Learn more by listening in to today’s mentoring conversation!
Mentoring Tips for Listeners
Answer the following questions after you listen:
- Buy Stephen Key’s book, One Simple Idea (2016). You can get a 20% discount from Amazon if you order on my website homepage, www.wementor.com.
- Are you selling something that is working for others? If the answer is ‘yes’, you are on the right track of building a brand. If you are not selling something that works for others, how can you change that?
- What is Andrew’s philosophy regarding education and real-life experience? What is your philosophy? Does that philosophy help you or hinder you?
- How does Open Innovation work?
- When would you hire a coach? What type of coach would you hire for yourself?
- What is some advice that has been helpful in Andrew’s life? Could that advice work for you?
- Listen to Stephen’s youtube channel below.
Mentoring Conversation Resources
- Licensing A Product
- Stephen Key: “One Simple Idea for Startups” | Talks at Google
- inventRight Boot Camp
- To check if a product has a patent or to check a product image, do a Patent Google Search and Images Google Search
Andrew Krauss. Business partner with Stephen Key of inventRight.com, a coaching business for inventors. Andrew was born and raised in California’s Silicon Valley, where he grew up being surrounded by passionate innovators—and what he identified early on as an unhealthy obsession with venture capital. When he discovered licensing, it was like a light bulb went off. “Everyone gets excited about raising money,” he said. “But licensing is much more sexy!” For one, there’s so much less financial risk—and yet still so much opportunity. He got excited about teaching inventors how to harness the power of open innovation and continues to be as excited, if not more, today.
As the day-to-day manager of Invent Right’s operations for over thirteen years and its head coach, Andrew has seen it all—and coached inventors through it. “At this point, our students have experienced every scenario you can possibly imagine,” he said. “Whether it’s communicating with a company that has never licensed an idea from an outside inventor before or signing a multi-million-dollar deal, we’ve done it.” He continues to be inspired by the opportunity to work with people who are not only passionate about their ideas, but also committed to making money from them.
He began coaching inventors over fourteen years ago as the President of the Inventors’ Alliance group in the San Francisco Bay Area. Andrew grew Inventors’ Alliance into one of the most active and well-established associations in the inventors’ community across the country. His expertise in the field of innovation was federally recognized when he was asked to advise the last president council on what changes could be made to the United States Patent and Trademark Office to better serve independent inventors. He has also been featured on National Public Radio’s Science Friday and as a licensing expert at USPTO conferences.
Several years ago, spurred by the feeling that the Bay Area was getting just a little too crowded, Andrew moved to Henderson, Nevada with his wife, where they are raising their daughter.
“Every day someone tells us how much we’ve helped them, and that means the world to me.”
Stephen Key. Stephen is the founder of the coaching business inventRight.com and is the award winning author of One Simple Idea (2016). He has successfully licensed more than 20 simple ideas in fields as diverse as the toy, beverage, athletic, music, and drug industries. Collectively, his creations have sold more than half a billion units and generated billions of dollars of revenue. Along the way, they have enabled him to design the Licensing Lifestyle of his dreams, which includes living in Lake Tahoe and traveling around the world for months at a time with his family, all while managing his business affairs merely with an iPhone. His course has attracted more than ten thousand students around the world whom he teaches to do the same.
“Launching A Product” Series: Open Innovation, Episode 85 www.inventright.com