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| On 01, Jan 2010

Message: 1103
Posted by: Alexander Poulson
Posted on: Monday, 17th September 2007

Can any innovation process be implemented without having a clear VOC process established?

Message: 1105
Posted by: QualityColorado
Posted on: Monday, 17th September 2007

Alexander, Good evening!

Regarding your question: “Can any innovation process be implemented without having a clear VOC process established?”

I believe so. Listening to the customer and then coming up with something innovative is certainly one course of action.

However, there are also ample examples of innovations that customers never asked for, nor would they have thought of asking for.

Best regards,QualityColorado

Message: 1750
Posted by: Jack Hipple
Posted on: Tuesday, 26th January 2010

Well, it depends as they say. If you mean “voice of the current customer”, that's very dangerous and short sighted. Picture yourself as the manufacturer of wooden stick pointers 30 years ago. Your customers were asking for less splintering wood and rubber tips that wouldn't fall off. Were they asking for a flexible metal pointer you could stick in your pocket? Not if they did not know that was possible. The customers using this marvelous new device were asking for more length in a smaller shell, less weight and so you are incrementally improving. Were these customers asking you for a laser pointer?

The point here is not to use VOC, but voice of the FUNCTION. What is trying to be accomplished? Indicating something, pointing toward something. It's the function, not the customer or current “thing”.

Message: 1751
Posted by: Navneet Bhushan
Posted on: Tuesday, 26th January 2010

I agree with Jack on the function being the king – as the TRIZ experts always say!

To elaborate further, in my opinion there are really four scenarios in terms of customer known and provider knowns, in all the four scenarios one may need specific strategies to explore further.

Please have a look at my article on Realinnovation

with warm regardsNavneet

Message: 1752
Posted by: Jack Hipple
Posted on: Wednesday, 27th January 2010

Nice summary, Navneet. I am still constantly amazed at how difficult this simple concept of “function” is to explain and understand.

Message: 1753
Posted by: David Troness
Posted on: Wednesday, 27th January 2010

It's possible I may have missed the main point of this thread, but I saw the acronym of VOC and had to add my 2 cents worth.

Regarding VOC, its use and mis-use, I would strongly recommend looking to into Tony Ulwick, Strategyn, and the book: “Outcome Driven Innovation”.  We had Tony's partner (Rob Schade) give a talk to Honeywell recently about this and got a lot of good discussion going.

Message: 1754
Posted by: Nikolai Khomenko
Posted on: Thursday, 28th January 2010


Jack, thank you for good example about pointer.

Absolutely agree that we have to focus on Function and Evaluation Parameters of the Function performance. However Third postulate of Classical TRIZ going beyond just function. Third Postulate of Classical TRIZ is about specific situation. First and second postulates  (1) Laws of system evolution and (2) Postulate of Contradiction. According third postulate tools for solving non typical problems (typical as well) must take into account all important  peculiarity of the specific situation but not only function. For instance to create new product that can not have VOC yet we can use Main Production process in the specific situation. Or recourses of the situation. Or problems that potential customers faced with but did not realize yet that they have a problem.

For instance, First Strategy of Invention Machine software creation in 1987 was aimed to a software that allowed people who have no competence in Classical TRIZ use TRIZ knowledge any way in order to manage their problem solving process. First prototypes conformed that this is possible. Pilot software was working good. People discover interesting direction for solving their problems. It was just prototype.

At that time most people did not realize that Computer can support human in solving complicated non typical problems but many people and potential customers did not believe that TRIZ based tools can be useful for them. So VOC was very negative?

For this kind of cases we should think keep in mind third postulate of Classical TRIZ and develop appropriate strategy and not only create new product but also keep in mind that market should be created as well. At that time many people know what is Text or Graphic editors, Data Base etc. But no one have idea on what is Software to support thinking process and problem solving.
One of the problems in this kind of situations is that potential partners we invite for cooperation from Western Europe afraid of so innovative product. And this market start to appear just in the middle of 1990-s in USA ands Japan. It was an example on product development when VOC does not exist at all.


Now example of  using Third Postulate of Classical TRIZ for creating  tools for solving Business problem.

Research was done by my colleagues  (Vissarion Sibiryakov (TRIZ master Certified by Altshuller) and Ludmila Semenova) show that there is a system of specific situations with appropriate systems of the typical problems for set of innovative business situations. They collected those typical problems during many years of practical work in application TRIZ for Business. Then they  develop typical strategy depending on specific situation. They also classify them according combination of 3 Factors: Stage of evolution of the product, Stage of evolution of the Market and stage of Evolution of the Company that proved the product to the market. They call it Business Cube. This Cub is a system of standard situations and standard solutions for those situations. But it is organized different than Altshuller's System of Standards/ Altshuller used just one S-curve of the product evolution. According his specific situation it was enough. Vissarion and Ludmila Develop System of standards for specific application – Business. And each business should take into account two more S-curves: S-curve of the Market evolution and S-curve for the Company evolution. 

As a result Business cub allowed to classify initial situation among 27 typical situations and propose typical set of problems and typical set of solution for the specific situation.


Altshuller's System of TRIZ standards is based on Functional approach of the product and just one S-curve of the product evolution. This approach does not take into account business factors. Vissarion Sibiryakov introduced two more S-curves in order to take into account peculiarity of the Business. He develop new platform for classification Standard solutions for Business. This TRIZ based tools was demonstrated to some of their colleagues in USA but still unknown in English speaking TRIZ community.

Language barriers and strong competition in the world still make difficulties for dissemination some important achievements that was accomplished in Russian TRIZ community.  And this is one more example about situation that VOC is absent. What is VOC for Classical  TRIZ and TRIZ based software is based on very initial popular texts. But deep knowledge is not requested by customers because of widely disseminated just superficial information on Classical TRIZ based tools but not about Deep theoretical background of the tools. It is a special problem to be solved by worldwide TRIZ community. At least for those who are really interested in deep Theoretical  knowledge that make application of TRIZ based tools even more efficient and create new tools whenever we need them. This was already done by Igor Vikentiev for Advertising and PR, by Sergey Faer for PR and Election companies by Vissarion Sibiryakov for Business application of TRIZ tools.

Just one theoretical postulate that mostly unknown even in Russian TRIZ community – Postulate of Specific Situation can help a lot for creating very powerful specific tools.

All discussions became more effective when we use this postulate. Discussion about VOC and it use for business as well.

Message: 1755
Posted by: Nick
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010


This is interesting to me. How or where can I learn more about these 27 “typical situations” and solutions. anyplase it is available in english?

Thank you.

Message: 1756
Posted by: Dave Verduyn
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010

Interesting discussion on VOC and Innovation.  Here's my 2 cents for what it's worth:  I recently developed the “CAGE Model” (video link below) which gets at understanding your customers better than your Customers understand themselves – in my opinion the key to success is to Explore AND Ignore Customers. Either by itself will fail.

The CAGE Model illustrates the following three ?knowledge universes? that must converge for successful Products and Services.

1) Internal perception of Requirements – What a typical development team perceives the requirements are at the beginning of the project before doing any Customer Research

2) External perception of the Requirements – What Customers will articulate when given the chance.

3) The Truth ? What will actually sell in a Competitive Marketplace.

As you will more clearly see in the video link, these ?universes? intersect, overlap, and create regions that are essential for success and regions that will cause your Product or Service to fail.  Success will only be achieved when the development team understands, refines, and converges these three universes.  The goal is to:

1) Understand and Maximize the ?right requirements? (C, A, G, and E elements in the video)

2) Minimize the ?wrong requirements? (B, F, and D elements in the video)

3) Have the wisdom to know the difference between the the 3 regions mentioned above.

The short video below begins to explain the first half of the battle which is to recognize and understand the distinct regions of these intersecting knowledge universes.  The second half of the battle is to have an effective and practical set of tools and best practices to ensure the right combination of ?CAGE Elements? while eliminating the BFD Elements.  Video link:

I'd love to hear comments on the CAGE Model.

Dave Verduyn

Message: 1757
Posted by: Zvi Ben Dov
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010

You can find this approach here (the book is in Russian, but with pics in English):

The same book was published here (one of the best russian TRIZ sites on the net): (Link of the1-st part – there are 6 more parts)

Use Google toolbar translator . It will help – I have tried.

As you will see the authors' names of this approach are different.

Here is a one more link. Try to use it to find an information in English – I am nearly sure it exists somewhere on the net.



Message: 1758
Posted by: Zvi Ben Dov
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010


In my opinion, it is a very good approach.

I like also Strategyn's approach – it differs from yours. I think that their articles ( will be somehow useful for you too if you have not read them yet.



Message: 1760
Posted by: Zvi Ben Dov
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010

I have found the name of this approach in English – Quantum-Economic Analysis (QEA)

Google gives this:

See also here:

Message: 1761
Posted by: Nikolai Khomenko
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010

Nick I can contact you directly to the Authors and then you can communicate them directly. Just send me your  E-mail addres and short information on you. or invite me in or in Facebook and we can discuss it there. I am affraid our discussion is can be considered by someone as offtopic here. Unfortunately this discussion group  not allow direct contact betwen participant.

Message: 1762
Posted by: Nikolai Khomenko
Posted on: Friday, 29th January 2010

Nick, Some more information in addition to my previous post.

TRIZ based  Business Cube, I was talking about in my post, was created long ago in USSR during Perestroika time. Since then many of our colleagues have learned this methodology and disseminate it around the world.  Here it is a link to the original source of information. It is created By Ludmila Semenova. She was working with Vissarion Sibiriakov and she was his student and partner. Ludmila developed  further Vissarion's initial ideas. Great research was done and lot of real life experience were collected and generalized into powerful methodology.

It is just initial information and you can try Google translation service.