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Jobs To Be Done

By Clay Christensen

Popularized by Clay Christensen in his book, The Innovator’s Dilemma, in which he discusses his theory of disruptive innovation. Jobs To Be Done, or JTBD, refers to the progress an individual is hoping to make in their life. A “job” is what the person is really seeking to accomplish in a given situation.

The idea is that people hire products or services to fulfill a certain job in their lives. It is the product and marketing manager’s job then, to understand what that job is for the customer and how they can position their offering to meet that need.

A job goes beyond simply accomplishing a functional task. There is often a social or emotional element to a job and why an individual may choose to hire a product over an alternative.

Christensen uses the example of the milkshake to demonstrate how JTBD can be applied in a real scenario.

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