the first 5 steps to executing Jobs Theory:
- Define your customer’s jobs: functional, emotional, and consumption
- Identify all of the unmet needs in your customer’s jobs
- Find the unmet needs
- Segment your customers
- Identify competitor weaknesses
is the job executor a consumer, a driver, a traveler, a parent, a surgeon, a nurse, a patient, a salesperson, a small business owner, a CIO, a technical architect, a database administrator, an engineer?
The job executor is your core customer. The market exists because they are trying to execute a functional job-to-be-done.
While the job executor does not always make the purchase decision (e.g. a procurement officer or a hospital administrator can influence a purchase), your market exists because someone is trying to execute the core functional job. There would be no reason to purchase a solution if no one were trying to execute the functional job.
Good job verbs are active and goal-driven, such as: determine, understand, learn, acquire, enable, ensure, optimize, create, teach, instill, develop, buy, sell, obtain, identify, detect, mitigate, diagnose, treat, cure, prevent.
Focus on why in customer interviews. Ask your customers why they use a certain product. Why does a salesperson use CRM software? Why does a patient use a step-tracking app? CRM software and health apps are solutions and thus not jobs.
When your job executor wakes up in the morning, do they think, “I have to get this job done today”? Do salespeople wake up wondering how they will acquire customers? Do parents wake up wondering how to instill a behavior in a child? “Did people waking up 100 years ago also need to do get this job done?”
A personal-emotional job is how you want to feel and avoid feeling when executing a job. For example, when getting to a destination on time, drivers want to feel calm and confident that they will arrive on time. They want to avoid feeling anxious about being late.
A social-emotional job is how the job executor wants to be perceived (and avoid being perceived) by others. For example, an IT professional wants to be perceived as valuable to the organization when optimizing a network. A surgeon wants to avoid being perceived as unsympathetic by patients when restoring artery blood flow.
Emotional jobs matter because if two products get the functional job done equally well, customers will choose the one that makes them feel better.
Consumption jobs are the tasks required to use a solution. Purchase, install, learn to use, interface, maintain, repair, and dispose are all consumption jobs that relate to using a solution.
a job spec should include all the criteria a customer uses to judge if she can execute the job successfully. We call these criteria the customer needs, and they are metrics.
Needs have a direction (reduce), a metric (time or likelihood), and a goal (e.g. an alternative route, restenosis).
Responding to financial aid inquiries within 10 minutes reduces the time it takes to determine if you can obtain financial aid. This is just one need in the job, “adult learners (the job executors) obtaining credentials to improve their professional prospects (the job-to-be-done) as quickly and efficiently as possible”.
every job-to-be-done has about 100 customer needs (metrics)
Finding unmet needs is how you precisely articulate and quantify your customers’ struggles. A need is unmet if it has high importance but low customer satisfaction.
For example, Apple and Google Map did not help drivers “reduce the time it takes to determine an alternate route.” Before Waze, you had no way to quickly determine if you should take an alternate route. Waze built a business that Google bought for $1.3 billion by serving this unmet need in the job of getting to a destination on time.
With Jobs-to-be-Done, our target is the job executors with the most unmet needs. They are the most underserved customers and therefore the segment who is most likely to buy (“hire”) your product to get the job done.
To execute Jobs Theory, we find customers who rate the same needs as important and unsatisfied and group them together. These are the people most likely to buy your product if it gets the job done better, regardless of their personas. They have the highest levels of frustration and anxiety when executing the job and are likely looking for a new solution.
Once you see your entire competitive landscape, you can find and measure your competitors’ weaknesses by using the unmet needs in your customer’s job. The competitive weakness sets the bar for how well your solution should meet the needs. To get customers to switch, you should target significant improvements over the speed and accuracy of your competition’s weak solution.
the right question: What can we do to serve our segment’s unmet needs in the job better than the existing solutions?
- Faster, cheaper, better
- Predictable (less variability)
- Efficient (high throughput, less waste)
180 to 360 interviews