Jobs to Be Done: Theory to Practice

Why do so many innovation projects fail? What are the root causes of failure? How can they be avoided? Since 1990, Tony Ulwick has pioneered an innovation process that answers these questions. In 1999, Tony introduced Clayton Christensen to the idea that “people have underlying needs or processes in their lives, that they are addressing in some way right now”—an insight that was to become Jobs-to-be-Done Theory. 

For 25 years, Ulwick and his company, Strategyn, have helped over 400 companies, applying Jobs-to-be-Done Theory in practice with a success rate of 86%—a 5-fold improvement. 

“Ulwick has taken the guesswork out of innovation,” says the ‘father of modern marketing,’ Philip Kotler, S. C. Johnson Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. “He has done this by introducing us to Jobs-to-be-Done theory, and converting it to practice using his rigorous innovation process known as Outcome-Driven Innovation. 

I call him the Deming of Innovation because, more than anyone else, Tony has turned innovation into a science,” adds Kotler. 

– Why companies fail at innovation and how to avoid critical mistakes.
– How to employ the Jobs-to-be-Done Theory Needs Framework to categorize, define, capture, and prioritize customer needs.
– A Jobs-to-be-Done Growth Strategy Matrix to categorize, understand, and employ the 5 strategies that drive growth.
– Outcome-Based Segmentation: how does it create new opportunities?
– The details of the innovation process known as Outcome-Driven Innovation. It ties customer-defined metrics to the customer’s Job-to-be-Done, transforming every aspect of opportunity discovery, marketing and innovation.
– The Language of Job-to-be-Done – the syntax and lexicon of innovation. 

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