Get the job done – who are your customers and what do they want?

Sara Doltz

Jobs-to-be-done theory is best defined as a perspective — a lens through which you can observe markets, customers, needs, competitors, and customer segments differently, and by doing so, make innovation far more predictable and profitable. Welcome to a workshop that can change your business at it's core.

At this years From Business to Buttons we invited Tony Ulwick. He is the pioneer of Jobs-to-be-Done Theory and the inventor of Outcome-Driven Innovation (ODI). His methods are used around the world and he and Strategyn, the consulting firm Tony Ulwick founded 26 years ago, have worked with one third of the Fortune 100.

When in Stockholm, Tony Ulwick will also host a Jobs-to-be-Done Workshop. It will be held the day after the conference for those who want to learn more about the core tenets of Jobs Theory and how you can apply it to your next innovation initiative.

Ideally, you'll bring the whole team along; people from product planning, development, R&D, design, marketing and sales. This will put the entire team on the same page and give them a common language for innovation and success.

The workshop in Stockholm will be held on May 16. It will be both theoretical and practical. 

– We start with the core tenets of Jobs Theory, then lay out all the details needed to put that theory into practice and  help attendees get started with hands-on exercises.

The most common challenge in getting started is defining the customer and what their job is.

– The customer can mean a lot of things for different people in the organization. Is the customer the buyer? The user? The Installer? The influencer? Once you get past that, with a clear view of the customer, you can start defining the jobs.

Defining a job can be challenging as well. Tony Ulwick gives an example of one of Strategyn’s customers, a pesticide manufacturer:

– They thought that the customer (the grower/farmer) used their products to kill weeds. But the growers disagreed, saying their job wasn't to ”kill weeds”, but rather was to ”grow crops”. This is the first step towards predictable innovation, says Tony Ulwick.

Can you use the Jobs-to-be-Done method and ODI on products AND services? Is there a difference?
– The method works exactly the same, and equally as well, on both products and solutions: There’s always a job to be done! The goal is to help them get that job done better and/or more cheaply. 

Read more about the Jobs theory and case studies at

If you want to know more – sign up for the workshop in May.

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