Job(s) to Get Done

The term "Job(s) to Get Done" is the fundamental unit of analysis for customer-centered innovation management to build products, services or even business models that fit to the world of customers. Clay Christensen, a professor at Harvard Business School, who coined the term the first time described it like this:

“With few exceptions, every job people need or want to do has a social, a functional, and an emotional dimension. If marketers understand each of these dimensions, then they can design a product that's precisely targeted to the job. 

In other words, the job, not the customer, is the fundamental unit of analysis for a marketer, who hopes to develop products that customers will buy.“

A good "Job(s) to Get Done" statement is usually structured as follows: 

"When_, they want to, so they can__."


"When I am in a rush, starving and on the go, I want to get something I can eat with one hand while driving my car, so I don't need to make a long break and lose too much time."

More examples:

Instructions for Coaches

  1. Add as many details as possible to the context of your customers’ situation to design offerings that really help them getting their job(s) done. Example:

    1. "When I am hungry..." → Offering: Restaurant with tasty food

    2. "When I am in a rush and hungry..." → Offering: Fast-food restaurant

    3. "When I am in a rush, starving and on the go..." → Offering: Fast-food restaurant with drive-through

    4. "When I am in a rush, starving, on the go and need something I can eat while driving my car..." → Offering: Fast-food restaurant with drive-through and packing that can be handled with one hand.

  2. "Crossing the river to collect firewood for the night" is one way to describe the "job" of the people on this picture. Bring your discussion to another level by asking "Why do they want to get this job done?" The answer could be: To make a fire and ultimately cook a meal for the family." May be this is a more inspiring angle to look at the people's job to create (disruptive) innovation. Try it out!