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Product Development Directors

The Job

Product development directors are responsible for overseeing the development of various types of products and services. They may specialize in certain categories, such as automobiles, software programs, cosmetics, or even more specifically such as green cleaning products. They oversee other product development specialists, such as analysts, engineers, researchers, and marketers, ensuring the development steps move smoothly and efficiently from idea generation to product launch.

According to Entrepreneur.com, product development is defined as "the overall process of strategy, organization, concept generation, product and marketing plan creation and evaluation, and commercialization of a new product." Product development directors review product ideas, work closely with market researchers to determine if the ideas are cost-effective and viable for companies, and then present the ideas to the companies' managers, chief executives, board members, and/or other related decision-makers. They may also be involved in determining production costs and making sure the products are in accordance with design and quality specifications.

Product development directors oversee all of the development phases to ensure that deadlines are met each step of the way. They help establish the objectives of product development and coordinate the development schedules. They make sure the development team follows the established product development procedures and best practices. They may also be responsible for hiring, training, and guiding development team workers. 

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