Finding the right job for your product

In his Sloan Management Review article on Finding the Right Job For Your Product, Clay Christensen defined the Customer Jobs-To-Be-Done concept:

“When customers find that they need to get a job done, they “hire” products or services to do the job. This means that marketers need to understand the jobs that arise in customers’ lives for which their products might be hired. Most of the “home runs” of marketing history were hit by marketers who saw the world this way. The “strike outs” of marketing history, in contrast, generally have been the result of focusing on developing products with better features and functions or of attempting to decipher what the average customer in a demographic wants.”

The Whirlpool smart washing machine is a good case of a product struggling to find the right job and the consequences thereof:

“We’re a little bit of a hammer looking for a nail right now,” Chris Quatrochi, Whirlpool’s global director of user experience and connectivity, said last week at a conference hosted by tech blog Gigaom. The buyers of web-connected washers, more than a year after launch, are still “not at all widespread,” he said. “Trying to understand exactly the value proposition that you provide to the consumer,” he said, “has been a little bit of a challenge.”

 

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About Arie Goldshlager

Customer Insight, Customer Strategy, and Innovation Consultant
This entry was posted in Consumer-Driven Innovation, Customer Insight, Innovation. Bookmark the permalink.

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