Jobs-to-be-done: How does the Christensen #jtbd framework compare to Strategyn's Outcome Driven Innovation (ODI) framework?

Updated on : January 20, 2022 by Joel Hopkins



Jobs-to-be-done: How does the Christensen #jtbd framework compare to Strategyn's Outcome Driven Innovation (ODI) framework?

Well, here is my thought. I see ODI as a deeper extension designed to identify specific customer needs; those who are over-served, fully cared for, and neglected. You cannot get to this point without understanding the job. Both approaches have complementary approaches to discovering jobs, although ODI seems to be more focused on the interview process than observation (although they talk about that as well).

I have read most of Christensen's books, one by Innosight, and have also delved into What Customers Want (Ulwick) and Service Innovation (Bettencourt). They clearly have a more systematic way of ta

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Well, here is my thought. I see ODI as a deeper extension designed to identify specific customer needs; those who are over-served, fully cared for, and neglected. You cannot get to this point without understanding the job. Both approaches have complementary approaches to discovering jobs, although ODI seems to be more focused on the interview process than observation (although they talk about that as well).

I have read most of Christensen's books, one by Innosight, and have also delved into What Customers Want (Ulwick) and Service Innovation (Bettencourt). Clearly, they have a more systematic way of identifying opportunities by defining and qualifying customer needs. In my experience in the CRM world, we are faced with two problems:

  1. Most companies cannot define and articulate what a customer's need is, much less who to identify one (neither do most consultants or software stores in this space).
  2. Most of the "innovation" is based on small groups operating under the restriction of the product or on a fire hose that comes from a crowd. Either way, there are few guarantees of finding an appropriate set of goals for innovative features or business models, and there are many hurdles.


The other books have been great at explaining this very useful concept, as well as getting a much better high-level view of the market and how disruption works. However, on a tactical level, I would lean towards ODI.

I am starting an extensive job cataloging project in the CRM world (sales organizations, marketing organizations, customer service, C-suite, etc). I'll give you an update when I'm done in 15 years :) This catalog may be a bit big

Although I have read about ODI, I can only comment as a JTBD practitioner. I definitely see Jobs and ODI as close cousins.

What I can say is that the structured approach to getting to jobs and designing products to target opportunities does exist, it just hasn't been well documented or published.

The pieces that have been published (blog posts, articles, books, etc.) are completely focused on giving the reader a clear understanding of the theory, but don't touch on the steps that need to be followed to execute it.

On a positive note, we are addressing that opportunity by building

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Although I have read about ODI, I can only comment as a JTBD practitioner. I definitely see Jobs and ODI as close cousins.

What I can say is that the structured approach to getting to jobs and designing products to target opportunities does exist, it just hasn't been well documented or published.

The pieces that have been published (blog posts, articles, books, etc.) are completely focused on giving the reader a clear understanding of the theory, but don't touch on the steps that need to be followed to execute it.

On a positive note, we are addressing that opportunity by building an online course that will teach Jobs to be done at a tactical level. People (product managers, executives, strategists, etc.) who have enrolled in the first version (beta) of the course have expressed a clear expectation of what it should offer: "When I finish with the course, I will be able to create a project of Job-based research, analyze findings to uncover jobs, and have a solid understanding of how to approach product development armed with job-oriented information. "

Hopefully this will start to fill the gap you identified in your question (the lack of a structured approach).

From my brief reading of the ODI literature, I like that it addresses how to choose a JTBD that is worth investing in.
Just discovering a JTBD and understanding push / pull doesn't mean it's worth the time and money to design a solution. ODI has a scoring system that aims to highlight which JTBD is underserved and also has the largest potential payment market.

They are different levels of the same approach to product development.

If you check out Ulwick's book promotion on Strategyn's website, he describes ODI as "applied works-to-do theory." So it seems to me that ODI is declared as a more tactical approach to JTBD theory.

Hi there! I had some of these same questions, so I wrote a series that mentions some of the differences (terminology, 'what the job refers to'), etc. I hope this helps!

Jobs To Do: Approaches and People - Frameplay - Medium

That's because the app store, and not the iPhone, was the disruptive innovation that led to the great success of the iPhone. And Clay's theories strongly explain the disruption caused by the app store.

The iPhone was a sustained innovation if you looked at it as a piece of hardware and compared it to another piece of hardware (Nokia) and pointed to a better screen, better navigation, etc.

But that's not what the iPhone was all about. The key disruption that accompanied the iPhone and therefore engineered its success was the app store. Before the app store, telecommunications companies and phone manufacturers

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That's because the app store, and not the iPhone, was the disruptive innovation that led to the great success of the iPhone. And Clay's theories strongly explain the disruption caused by the app store.

The iPhone was a sustained innovation if you looked at it as a piece of hardware and compared it to another piece of hardware (Nokia) and pointed to a better screen, better navigation, etc.

But that's not what the iPhone was all about. The key disruption that accompanied the iPhone and therefore engineered its success was the app store. Before the app store, telcos and phone manufacturers acted as gatekeepers to determine which apps would see the light of day. App builders would get 30% of revenue and apps to market were less reliant on app innovation and more on the judgment of the telco.

The app store totally opened up this market. First, the share of app creators changed to 70%, totally reversing the equation. Second, all app creators were given the same opportunity to promote their apps (sort of like the way Youtube disrupted the A&R industry and gave us Justin Bieber ... ugggh ...).

This led to more apps in the app store, leading to more selection for consumers, leading to better apps expanding to the top, leading to a virtuous circle in which developers were motivated to create the best applications.

As a result, the iPhone built an ecosystem around itself that allowed a phone, for the first time, to become extensible, thus disrupting the market for telecom-powered services and pre-integrated applications. If you apply Clay's research to the app store, the app store was definitely disruptive. Clay talks about disruptive innovation that addresses non-consumption and turns non-consumers into consumers. Well the app store addressed non-production. In telecommunications models, many developers were discouraged from creating applications as it was a hassle to work with telecommunications companies. With app stores, many of these developers got into the app game. So Clay's research is spot on in demonstrating the disruptive nature of the app store. And that's what made the iPhone, in turn, disruptive as a whole.

I begin with the person I most associate with this notion, Clayton Christensen, author of The Innovator's Dilemma. From this 2006 HBS practical knowledge article (http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/5170.html):

With few exceptions, every job that people need or want to do has a social, functional, and emotional dimension. If marketers understand each of these dimensions, then they can design a product that is precisely oriented to the job. In other words, the job, not the customer, is the fundamental unit of analysis for a marketer hoping to develop products that customers will buy.


Use / consumption

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I begin with the person I most associate with this notion, Clayton Christensen, author of The Innovator's Dilemma. From this 2006 HBS practical knowledge article (http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/5170.html):

With few exceptions, every job that people need or want to do has a social, functional, and emotional dimension. If marketers understand each of these dimensions, then they can design a product that is precisely oriented to the job. In other words, the job, not the customer, is the fundamental unit of analysis for a marketer hoping to develop products that customers will buy.


The use / consumption of a product has a tangible characteristics orientation, of course. That is the easiest way to think about why people buy your product.

But the "work to do" approach goes further. Probe the deeper motivations surrounding the use of your product. Understand that, and you can design products that are more closely tailored to meet customer needs.

Here is an example that I came up with. Check out the My Starbucks Idea site. Here are five ideas on a common theme:

  • I need a Starbucks 24 hours a day (http://sbux.co/e9NGC9)
  • Have overnight locations near hospitals (http://sbux.co/fXUI6B)
  • Later hours of the weekend (http://sbux.co/hLmPWp)
  • More comfortable seats and extended hours (http://sbux.co/gONd9o)
  • Open late (http://sbux.co/h6tDoo)


Now, as the features progress, the above ideas are pretty basic. Keep Starbucks
open later. But instead of looking at them that way, are they providing
clues about the "job" that customers hire Starbucks for?

Customers are obviously hiring Starbucks for more than one cup of
coffee. Starbucks has consciously built a
more lifestyle-driven experience. These late-night requests are indicators that
Starbucks has an opportunity to take on a new "job." Here is my
interpretation of "work" (yours may be different):

People want the solo intellectual pursuits of reading a book, writing creatively, researching, or doing projects on a computer. They could make this at home with their own coffee or tea infusion. But there is something social about being around other people, even if you don't relate to them. You are connected to the world, as you view it through the periphery of your mind's focus.


People want to pursue their individual interests, but do so in a way that allows them to feel connected to the larger society, to be around like-minded people, and to be aware of what is happening.


If you accept that as the "job" that customers hire Starbucks
for overnight, then the next thing to do in customer-centric innovation is to
come up with other characteristics of the experience that address "work."

This is where Starbucks can suggest new features to customers, based on a better understanding of "work."

Often times, the problem is not the tool itself, but how people use it. However, it is true that a good tool should avoid misuse as much as possible.

The Job to be Done approach, at least as I've seen it discussed and applied by people in the world of lean startups and software engineering, too much dismisses the value of personal development.

For example, I have seen people say that if you develop a personality for iPhone buyers, you end up with modern youth and exclude the older generation, whereas if you look at the work to be done, you have a smartphone that solves problems easily, then both w

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Often times, the problem is not the tool itself, but how people use it. However, it is true that a good tool should avoid misuse as much as possible.

The Job to be Done approach, at least as I've seen it discussed and applied by people in the world of lean startups and software engineering, too much dismisses the value of personal development.

For example, I've seen people say that if you develop a personality for iPhone buyers, you end up with modern youth and exclude the older generation, whereas if you look at the work to be done, you have a smartphone that solves problems easily, then both would be perfectly fine.

The argument is fundamentally the same: who wants the value does not matter as much as the desire for that value. And that extrapolates to: people no longer matter or the part of a user story doesn't matter as much as the situation / context.

This seems like an easy argument, but in the context of a startup it can kill you, as you don't have a market segment to focus on to begin with (even if both the older generation and the modern kid want the same job done, don't you wish I didn't reach out and talk to both of you the same way). When it comes to writing user stories, on the other hand, not having a who and focusing on when / context means losing perspective, leading to cognitive bias. Knowing who wants the value is * very * important to deliver it on the spot.

I interviewed Clay for Reuters on April 30, 2012. I had a lot of ground to cover for my article, but this is one of the most fascinating answers he gave that day.

Clay didn't think of the iPhone as a transformative technology when it first appeared (Why couldn't Clayton Christensen's theories predict the success of the iPhone?). Surprisingly, we never use the word "iPhone" when we talk about it, but that's what this part of the interview is about.

Here is the article based on my interview: http://blogs.reuters.com/paulsmalera/2012/06/29/paradise-regained-clayton-christensen-and-the-path-

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I interviewed Clay for Reuters on April 30, 2012. I had a lot of ground to cover for my article, but this is one of the most fascinating answers he gave that day.

Clay didn't think of the iPhone as a transformative technology when it first appeared (Why couldn't Clayton Christensen's theories predict the success of the iPhone?). Surprisingly, we never use the word "iPhone" when we talk about it, but that's what this part of the interview is about.

Here is the article based on my interview: http://blogs.reuters.com/paulsmalera/2012/06/29/paradise-regained-clayton-christensen-and-the-path-to-salvation/

And here is the slightly edited excerpt (for clarity) from the transcript:

Paul: Have you had a chance to see what Tim Cook has done so far?

Clay: Well my wife says I'm the Jewish mother of business because I always worry about everything, even when everything is going well.

I have concerns. Not about Tim, I don't know him. But, about Apple. The most important is: there is a theory from our research in The Innovator's Solution, Chapters 5 and 6, which is: "What happens when a product becomes good enough for what low-end customers need?"

For a host of reasons, before that happens, the dominant architectures will be proprietary and optimized. But when a product becomes good enough, then the architectures will become modular. And modularity always starts at the bottom of the market, among customers who are the most served. And modularity moves the market.

You see this happening in cars. Mercedes, at the higher end, is still making interdependent proprietary architectures. At the bottom, Kia is very modular.

In the personal computer market, the proprietary architectures were Silicon Graphics, Hewlett Packard, and the enterprise systems, Sun Microsystems, all terribly interdependent and proprietary. And Dell comes across as modular. And those guys just never, 20 years ago you couldn't conceive that there were going to be increasingly complicated problems to tackle.

Disruption theory says the modular core takes over. And you can see it coming. So the first thing we posted about Sun Microsystems he said, “Watch out. Modularity is coming. "It was the late 1990s and they were at the top of their game. There was no data, but" the theory goes. "

This is what worries me about Apple, as the Android operating system facilitates the modularity of the smartphone.

And then they come to Motorola, and a couple hundred modular smartphone makers in China. And they all go in from the bottom, so up here, you don't feel it. Then all of a sudden ...

So there is no need for us to discuss what Apple should do. But, Tim needs to use theories to look to the future, or the game will be over. Now, it is simply inconceivable to humanity that Apple is in trouble. And I don't have an opinion, but the theory has an opinion on this.

I would say, call it a major wave that is coming and one that the administration needs to address. I think in the article, don't say Apple is in trouble.

Laughter

A little later in the interview, Clay gave insight into his thought process on theories. I think this explains how he came to write them with such clarity and power.

Clay: It's fun to refer to theories as things. You know that gravity is a theory and it has an opinion, a very strong opinion: that if you get off the edge of the roof of a building, you are going to fall. And you may not agree with this opinion, but you don't care.

The disk drive industry to begin with.

The New Yorker just published a devastating article by Jill Lepore.

Jill systematically dismantles Christensen's disruptive innovation hypothesis.

Christensen wrote his doctoral thesis on disk drives.

The piece reads in part:

"Christensen argues that incumbents in the disk drive industry were regularly destroyed by newcomers. But today, after much consolidation, the divisions that dominate the industry are divisions that led the market in the 1980s. In some cases, it was ownership that changed: IBM sold its hard drive division to Hitachi, which

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The disk drive industry to begin with.

The New Yorker just published a devastating article by Jill Lepore.

Jill systematically dismantles Christensen's disruptive innovation hypothesis.

Christensen wrote his doctoral thesis on disk drives.

The piece reads in part:

"Christensen argues that incumbents in the disk drive industry were regularly destroyed by newcomers. But today, after much consolidation, the divisions that dominate the industry are divisions that led the market in the 1980s. In some cases, it was their ownership that changed: IBM sold its hard drive division to Hitachi, which then sold its division to Western Digital.) In the long run, the victory in the disk drive industry appears to have been for the manufacturers that were good at incremental improvements, whether or not they were the first to commercialize the new disruptive format. Companies that quickly launched a new product but weren't adept at tweaking have tended to shut down. "

http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2014/06/23/140623fa_fact_lepore?currentPage=all&mobify=0?mbid=social_retweet

Take a look at Osterwalder's Value Proposition Canvas, which integrates the #JTBD approach: Test Your Value Proposition: Supercharge Lean Startup and CustDev Principles And I also recommend the following posts:

  • Technique 1 - Work to be done
  • http://businessmodelhub.com/forum/topics/a-practical-exercise-for-understanding-customer-segments

Other Guides:


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