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In a challenging economy filled with nimble competitors, no one can afford to stagnate. Yet, innovation is notoriously difficult. Only 1 in 100 new products are successful enough to cover development costs, and even fewer impact a company’s growth trajectory. So how do you pinpoint the winning ideas that customers will love?
Sifting through purchasing data for clues about what might sell or haphazardly brainstorming ideas are typical strategies. But Jobs to Be Done offers a far more precise and effective approach: determining the drivers of customer behavior—those functional and emotional goals that people want to achieve. Using the Jobs method, it becomes easy to see that people don’t really need a 1/4-inch drill bit, but rather a 1/4-inch hole. They’re not just buying ice cream, but also celebration, bonding, and indulgence.
This simple shift in perspective opens up new insights about your customers and a wealth of hidden opportunities. Social media newcomer Snapchat, for example, used the Jobs process to capture the millennial demographic. The company satisfied its users’ unmet needs to document real life, in the moment, while retaining control over their privacy.
Packed with similar examples from every industry, this guide explains the foundational concepts laid out in Clayton Christensen’s The Innovator’s Solution and presents a detailed action plan developed by innovation expert Stephen Wunker and his team. From ideation to iteration, you’ll learn how to:
• Figure out what customers really want, even if they can’t express it
•Sort valuable insights from less useful customer data
• Dig into the underlying “why” of consumer behavior, beyond the “what”
• Target unaddressed jobs to be done that have the power to disrupt
• Identify key customer segments you didn’t know existed
• Develop solutions that work with ingrained habits, not against them
• Use a Jobs-based lens to get a broader view of the competition
• Generate better ideas in brainstorming sessions and vet your solutions
• Sidestep common mistakes, such as engaging in “feature wars”
• Spot emerging trends that are changing how customers will behave
• Work customer insights into the design process
• And much more.
Jobs to Be Done gives you a clear-cut framework for thinking about your business and a roadmap for discovering new markets, products, services, and creative opportunities to innovate your way to success.
Stephen Wunker worked with Clayton Christensen for years, building out consulting practices based on his teachings. He now runs New Markets Advisors. He has written for Forbes, Harvard Business Review, and The Financial Times.
Jessica Wattman leads New Markets’ social innovation practice. She has applied Jobs principles in work from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.
David Farber is a manager at New Markets. An avid hiker and traveler, he has explored six continents.
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Why do most new products fail to meet expectations in an age of unlimited customer data? As Henry Ford reputedly put it, “If I’d asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” The truth is, we need to go beyond what customers say they want and understand why they have the wants that they do.
First popularized by Clayton Christensen, the concept of Jobs to Be Done argues people purchase products and services to achieve specific goals. While the concept is simple, the path to putting it into practice has been murky. This book’s groundbreaking Jobs Roadmap takes you step by step through the innovation process and reveals how to:
• Gather valuable customer insights • Turn those insights into new product ideas • Test and iterate until you find original and profitable solutions.
Advance Praise for Jobs to Be Done:
“As companies struggle to predict whether people will choose one product over another, Jobs to Be Done gives a clear method for understanding what will make goods stand out. The steps it provides will help maximize the likelihood that your product will succeed.” —Jennifer Saenz, Chief Marketing Officer, Frito-Lay
“Jobs to Be Done takes what has become an essential theory for gauging customer needs and turns it into a structured approach to innovation based on what really drives behavior. It provides a coherent and highly actionable set of tools that you can put to use right away.” —Vijay Govindarajan, Coxe Distinguished Professor, Dartmouth College, Tuck School of Business
“The Jobs methodology is core to how Nestlé approaches the front end of innovation. This book brings innovation to the next level, offering extremely practical steps to create opportunity in both established and new markets.” —Doug Munk, Director, Innovation and Strategy, Nestlé USA
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