Courtesy of SAP.

Summer 2009
Volume 50, Issue # 4

Access the full Table of Contents below.
Issues archive

The Practice of Global Product Development

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 34 min 

Best practice in product development (PD) is migrating from local collaboration to global collaboration. Global product development (GPD) represents a transformation for business, and it applies to a range of industries. The objective of this article is to present frameworks that can help companies address strategic and tactical issues when considering GPD. The concepts have been developed through discussions with more than 100 companies in 15 countries in North America, Europe and Asia.


Fernando de Sousa (Flickr)

Designing Waits That Work

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 19 min 

Designers at restaurants, theme parks and elsewhere have investigated how to make waiting in line more pleasant. What they have learned has profound implications for all managers.



Usability for Evil

  • Opinion & Analysis
  • Read Time: 2 min 

How do some companies get their customers to do something that’s useful for the company but not really for the customer?

Courtesy of SAP.

How to Manage Virtual Teams

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 16 min 

Based on an investigation of the performance of 80 software development projects with varying levels of dispersion — members in different cities, countries or continents — this article asserts that virtual teams offer tremendous opportunities despite their greater managerial challenges. In fact, dispersed teams outperformed their colocated counterparts when they had the appropriate processes in place. Those processes can be classified in two categories: task-related and socio-emotional.

Image courtesy of the World Economic Forum.

Innovation From the Inside Out

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 26 min 

Nurturing a new and lasting idea doesn’t result from analyzing market data. Aspiring creators must act on what nonprofits already know: you get the best answers by burying yourself in the questions. The authors explore the efforts of companies such as Grameen Bank and Hindustan Unilever Ltd., the Indian subsidiary of the Dutch consumer products multinational Unilever N.V. They are engaged in serving the multitrillion-dollar consumer market at the “base of the economic pyramid” or BoP — the four billion people with annual per capita incomes below $1,500.


Toyota’s Secret: The A3 Report

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 5 min 

How does Toyota solve problems, create plans, and get new things done? Company managers use a tool called the A3, named after the international paper size on which it fits, as a key tactic in sharing a deeper method of thinking. This tactic and style of processing information lies at the heart of Toyota’s sustained success.



The 2009 Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize

  • Opinion & Analysis
  • Read Time: 2 min 

The editors of the MIT Sloan Management Review are pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize, awarded to the authors of the most outstanding MIT SMR article on planned change and organizational development published from Fall 2007 to Fall 2008.

Image courtesy of Edward Tufte.

How Facts Change Everything (If You Let Them)

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 11 min 

Information-visualization guru and famed PowerPoint debunker Edward Tufte explains how businesses would think better, make better decisions and present themselves more powerfully if only they would learn to talk — both internally and externally — in facts.


Morph the Web To Build Empathy, Trust and Sales

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 25 min 

We’ve long been able to personalize what information the Internet tells us — but now comes “Web site morphing,” and an Internet that personalizes how we like to be told. For companies, it means that communicating — and selling — will never be the same.