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ARE THERE WAYS PRIVATE EQUITY FIRMS
CAN FACILITATE CROSS-FERTILIZATION OF
GOOD INNOVATION PRACTICES AMONG THEIR
Absolutely. The best approach involves consistent raining and implementation of innovation best
practices at each portfolio company. When everyone has
the same tools and speaks the same language, it’s easier to
share expertise in processes, technologies and practices to
Even if your group isn’t ready for new product development (NPD) process improvement on such a wide scale,
you can still get a lot of mileage by ensuring each has a
good NPD project portfolio management system to identify
which projects have the most potential. Often, there are
valuable resources within other portfolio companies that
can be exploited to help drive these efforts forward.
Generally, I find once a good portfolio management process is in place, the 80/20 rule applies: 20 percent of the
projects will deliver 80 percent of the results. Companies
should focus on that 20 percent and seek help in deploying
them, whether via competencies at other portfolio management companies or third-party firms.
Brenda Reichelderfer is a senior vice president and managing director at TriVista, an operations consulting firm focused on middle-market companies.
She has more than 30 years of experience in general
management, engineering and operations. In addition to her
extensive P&L background, Reichelderfer gained operational
expertise as plant manager, vice president of operations,
director of engineering and chief technology officer.
BRENDA REICHELDERFER // Senior Vice President and Managing Director, TriVista
A QUALIFIED OPINION