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10x Not 10%: Product management by orders of magnitude by Ken Norton at Mind the Product 2015

To truly make a product revolutionary you must transform your thinking and try to make a product 10x better.

When people are trying to improve upon an existing product or service, they often ask “How can I make this 10% better?” It is important to learn the difference in business between a 10% improvement and 10x the improvement. Many people try to enhance an existing product or service by playing off the existing model by making it quicker, smaller, prettier, etc. While this is great, it is thinking too small. In business, it is always important to adapt your thinking towards improvement with a 10x mindset.

Ken Norton, a product manager at Google, gave a talk on this topic at the Mind the Product Conference using Kodak Film cameras as an example.

Ken speaks about how Kodak enjoyed the profit they made from film cameras so much that they refused to adapt when digital cameras arose. Digital cameras were Kodak’s answer to “How do we get people to take 10x as many pictures?” which then lead into modern cellphone technology. Norton stresses that you cannot think about the existing model – you have to start from scratch. By adapting this mindset and inventing an entirely new type of camera, Kodak was able to achieve their goal and get people to take 10x more pictures.

This kind of thinking is what makes great ideas, products, and services come alive. Implement it in your life and in your company and see what you can rethink to push your company past the 10% and achieving 10x.

Check out the talk yourself here!

By Chris Sinclair Founder, The Anthem Group
By Chris Sinclair
Founder, The Anthem Group