How Twitter Applied the “Jobs to Be Done” Approach to Strategy - Deepstash
Top 7 TED Talks On Customer Success

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Top 7 TED Talks On Customer Success

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The "jobs to be done" approach

The "jobs to be done" approach

The "jobs to be done" approach defines a business from the perspective of what brings value to a customer. A job can be a problem to solve ("repair my car") or a goal ("get into college"). When there is a job to be done, people are motivated to find products, services, or experiences to perform those jobs.

For example, Twitter is using this strategy by focusing on its three core jobs: news, discussion, and helping people get paid.

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How companies define themselves

How an organisation defines its business will impact everything it does - what customers it serves, how it serves them, who are its competitors, what it considers as external forces, what strategies it uses, and how it innovates.

However, companies often define themselves by the products they sell or by an inward-looking characteristic such as its business model or capability. They answer the question of what business they are in in a myopic way that obscures the realities around them, leading to missing emerging threats and opportunities.

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Understand the full set of jobs

A company should recognise the full set of jobs they are hired for. This information can be collected by gathering insights from customer interviews, observations of how people engage with your company, and data gathered from website usage.

The list of specific jobs can be separated into higher-level jobs to consider for strategic prioritisation. 

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Communicate results and allocate resources

Once the jobs to focus on has been prioritised, the results are communicated throughout the company. It can provide a mechanism for allocating resources.

For example, when Twitter identified the strategic jobs, all product groups and teams reviewed their current product roadmaps and assessed how they connected to one of the priority jobs. If it didn't connect, the product was removed from the roadmap.

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Benefits of the jobs-to-be done approach

  • Expanding strategic options and innovation. Jobs viewed from a customer's perspective allows for strategic development, reveals the real competition, and opens up growth opportunities.
  • Investing in what matters most. When employees understand what jobs they should solve, they are empowered to make better decisions.
  • Aligning and inspiring the organisation. Employees gain a better understanding of the organisation's value and purpose.

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