Managing Innovation at Nypro, Inc. Harvard Case Solution & Analysis


Nypro, Inc. specializes in injection molding of plastic to produce plastic goods and equipment for industries, healthcare and automobile sectors. It is currently the fifth largest plastic molder in the US and owes much of its success and exponential growth to the president of the company, Gordon Lankton, who has significantly restructured the company both, at a strategic level and an organizational level.


The Internal Market for Innovation at Nypro, Inc.

Nypro, Inc. thrives on innovation and it has been the cornerstone of the company’s tremendous success. The company’s president, Gordon Lankton himself, is a competitive person and has emphasized the importance of healthy competition and innovation as vital factors that lead to success through many steps that he has taken ever since he has joined Nypro, Inc.


To stimulate innovation, Gordon has placed reliance on internal competition for which, he creates teams for each project which compete with other teams working on other projects. This causes competition among teams and while trying to outperform other teams, people often come up with ingenious solutions that end up saving the company’s money or improve the process leading to reduced wastages and improvement in production time. Whenever a team successfully finds a solution that either improves the process or saves the costs, this success is announced and other teams take keen interest in the new improvement and adopt it to improve their own performance.

Managing a Global Team Harvard Case Solution & Analysis Managing Innovation at Nypro, Inc. Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Nypro uses two teams for each project. At the outset, a “development team” is made constituting of engineers from both, Nypro and the client. These teams carry out product development and think of ways of innovating the processes used in the production. The development teams have allowed Nypro to propose some of the most innovative solutions to meet the demands of their client. This is evident from the Johnson & Johnson’s Reach Toothbrush Project. The solution provided by the Puerto Rican team resulted in the development of products like baby spoons, which provided better comfort to the end users. Once this is done and production begins, the previous team is dismantled and a continuous improvement team is assigned to each project. These teams are a result of the company’s Vistakon project. This development led to an unprecedented co-ordination between the clients and Nypro leading to greater precision in production and cost savings not only at Nypro but for the clients as well. These teams include people from diverse backgrounds who have previously worked on different projects. They provide their input based on their experiences gained while working at previous projects. When a team fails to provide new ideas, new members are assigned to the team in order to continue the improvement of the processes involved in the production.

In addition to competition at a team level, inter-division competition also takes place as performance results are regularly circulated within the company. These results measure a plant’s performance based on how well they have utilized the machines, the timeliness of shipments, customer returns and change in sales etc. Through such reports that are circulated frequently, the plants are able to compare themselves with other plants. This is particularly useful in a company that relies so heavily on constructive competition and innovation....................

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