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Jobs to be Done for Startups

Daily 60 Second Startup Advice
Jobs to be Done (JTBD) for Startups

Hello folks, and welcome to another episode of "Daily 60 Second Startup Advice." In the ever-evolving world of startups, success hinges on a deep understanding of your customers' needs. Today, we delve into a pivotal concept known as "Jobs to Be Done," a theory popularized by Clayton Christensen.


According to this theory, customers aren't merely buying products or services; they are hiring them to fulfill specific jobs or solve particular problems. In this text, we'll explore how understanding these jobs can be a game-changer for startups during the crucial phase of idea validation. So, let's dive in and discover how uncovering the problems your customers face can lead to innovative solutions and business success, all while enjoying the journey.

The Essence of "Jobs to Be Done"

At the heart of the "Jobs to Be Done" theory lies a profound insight: customers seek products or services not for their inherent qualities, but for their ability to resolve a problem or fulfill a need.


Think of it as a chain reaction: there's a problem (the job), an existing solution (or lack thereof), and the customer's willingness to pay for a solution. For startups, this means that success is predicated on identifying the specific jobs that your product or service can accomplish. During idea validation, your mission is to unearth these latent needs and determine if your offering aligns with them.

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Identifying the Problem within the Problem

While it's essential to recognize the job your product can fulfill, it's equally critical to delve deeper and identify the problem within the problem. In other words, what pain points are your potential customers experiencing? By dissecting the underlying issues, you can refine your solution to be more precise and effective. Remember, if these problems are significant enough and current solutions in the market fall short, customers will eagerly hire your product or service to get the job done. This is where your startup's value proposition begins to take shape, offering a unique angle to address your customers' unmet needs.

A few inspiring examples from the startup world for JTBD comes from Instagram, Facebook and TikTok.

Jobs To Be Done Examples for Instagram:

1. Stay Connected with Friends and Family: Users might use Instagram to keep up with the lives of their loved ones, seeing photos and updates from friends and family members.
2. Showcase Personal Brand: Many individuals, especially influencers, use Instagram to build and showcase their personal brand, sharing content related to their interests and passions.
3. Discover and Follow Trends:Users may turn to Instagram to discover the latest trends in fashion, beauty, lifestyle, and more.
4. Share Memorable Moments: People use Instagram to document and share significant life moments such as vacations, weddings, birthdays, and other milestones.
5. Connect with Like-minded Communities: Instagram offers a platform for users to connect with others who share similar hobbies, interests, or causes.
6. Market Products or Services: Businesses and entrepreneurs use Instagram as a marketing tool to promote products or services and engage with potential customers.

Jobs To Be Done Examples for TikTok:

1. Entertain and Be Entertained: Users often turn to TikTok for entertainment, whether it's through watching funny videos, dance challenges, or creative content.
2. Showcase Talent:TikTok is a platform for users to display their creativity and talents, whether it's singing, dancing, acting, or making art.
3. Discover Viral Trends: TikTok is known for its viral challenges and trends, and users often engage with these to stay in the loop.
4. Pass the Time: Many people use TikTok as a form of relaxation or to pass the time when they have a few minutes to spare.
5. Connect with a Younger Audience: Brands and marketers may use TikTok to connect with a younger, Gen Z audience.
6. Learn and Share Knowledge: TikTok is used for educational content, from quick life hacks to in-depth tutorials on various subjects.

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Jobs To Be Done Examples for Facebook:

1. Stay in Touch with Friends and Family: One of Facebook's primary jobs is to help users maintain connections with friends and family members, especially those who live far away.
2. Share Life Updates: Users post status updates, photos, and videos to share significant life events, news, and personal achievements.
3. Join and Engage in Groups: Facebook groups provide a platform for users to connect with like-minded individuals and discuss shared interests or causes.
4. Market and Promote Businesses: Many businesses use Facebook to market their products or services, create brand awareness, and engage with customers.
5. Stay Informed: Users often turn to Facebook for news updates, following pages and sources that provide information on current events.
6. Express Opinions and Beliefs: Facebook allows users to share their views on various topics, engage in discussions, and advocate for causes they care about.

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How to Perform A Jobs To Be Done Analysis To Validate Your Startup Idea

Jobs to be Done (JTBD) analysis is a valuable framework for understanding why customers choose certain products or services to fulfill specific needs or jobs. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to conduct a JTBD analysis for your startup:

1. Identify the Job or Need:
- Start by identifying the specific job or need that customers are trying to fulfill. This job could be functional, emotional, or social in nature.
- Ask questions like, "What problem are customers trying to solve?" or "What are they trying to achieve?"

2. Define the Customer Segment:
- Clearly define the customer segment you are analyzing. Different customer segments may have different jobs to be done.
- Consider demographics, psychographics, and behavioral traits to create a detailed customer persona.

3. Conduct Customer Interviews:
- The heart of JTBD analysis is gathering insights directly from customers through interviews or surveys.
- Ask open-ended questions to understand their experiences, motivations, and decision-making processes related to the job.
- Encourage customers to share stories and examples of when they successfully or unsuccessfully completed the job.

4. Identify Job Steps and Progress:
- Break down the job into specific steps or tasks that customers take to complete it.
- Understand the progress customers make at each step and the obstacles or challenges they face.

5. Document Functional and Emotional Jobs:
- Differentiate between the functional aspects of the job (e.g., the tasks to be completed) and the emotional aspects (e.g., how customers feel during the process).
- Explore the emotional gains and pains associated with the job.

6. Map Customer Goals:
- Create a visual map or timeline that illustrates the customer's journey from recognizing the need to successfully completing the job.
- Note the key touchpoints, interactions, and decisions along the way.

7. Identify Competing Alternatives:
- Determine what alternatives or solutions customers consider when trying to complete the job. These could be other products, services, or even DIY solutions.
- Understand why they might choose one alternative over another.

8. Analyze Customer Insights:
- Review the interview data and look for patterns, common themes, and trends related to customer motivations and pain points.
- Identify the "job drivers," which are the most critical factors that influence the choice of a product or service.

9. Create Personas and Scenarios:
- Develop customer personas based on the insights gained during interviews. These personas should represent different customer segments with distinct jobs and motivations.
- Create scenarios or use cases that describe how these personas use your product or service to complete the job successfully.

10. Prioritize Opportunities:
- Based on your analysis, prioritize opportunities for product or service improvements or innovations that align with the identified jobs to be done.
- Focus on addressing the most critical pain points or unmet needs.

11. Iterate and Test:
- Develop and implement solutions based on your findings and test them with real users to validate their effectiveness.
- Continue to refine your offerings based on feedback and data.

12. Monitor and Measure:
- Continuously monitor user behavior, gather feedback, and measure the impact of your changes on the job satisfaction and outcomes of your customers.

In the dynamic landscape of startups, the validation phase is a make-or-break moment. Armed with the "Jobs to Be Done" theory, your goal is to validate not only the demand for your product but also its ability to solve the identified problems effectively. Engage with your potential customers, gather feedback, and assess their willingness to pay for your solution. This iterative process not only refines your product but also solidifies your understanding of the job it fulfills. Remember, innovation often lies at the intersection of customer problems and ingenious solutions, and this phase is where those connections are forged.


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The Conclusion: Jobs to be Done as an Important Instrument in Startup Idea Validation

Amid the intense pursuit of startup success, it's easy to become laser-focused on the end goal. However, it's crucial to savor the journey along the way. Embracing the "Jobs to Be Done" theory doesn't mean losing sight of the excitement and passion that drove you to embark on this entrepreneurial voyage. As you strive to create value for your customers by solving their problems, remember to have fun, celebrate small victories, and cherish the learning experiences. The entrepreneurial journey is a remarkable one, filled with challenges and triumphs, and it's in these moments that your startup's unique story unfolds.

To conclude, the "Jobs to Be Done" theory is not just a concept; it's a guiding principle that can lead startups to success. By understanding the problems customers need to solve and tailoring your product or service to fulfill those jobs effectively, you pave the way for innovation and growth. During the idea validation phase, listening to your customers and refining your offering can set the stage for a thriving startup. And as you navigate this exhilarating journey, don't forget to enjoy the ride. Achieving Product-Market Fit thus success in the world of startups is not just about getting the job done; it's about doing it with passion, purpose, and a relentless drive to make a difference.

Full Text of the Video
Jobs To Be Done (JTBD) for Startups

Hello everyone,

Today's startup advice comes from an important theory called jobs to be done by Clayton Christensen.

So according to this theory, our customers are actually hiring us to do a job for them.

And this is the kind of thing you need to discover while you are doing your idea validation.

So think of it like this. So the problem is that the problem has a problem.

And if this problem is important for them, and if they are not able to feasibly solve their problem with the existing solutions in the market, then they would be willing to pay you to do the job for them.

So try to uncover the problems of your customers.

And if they would be willing to pay you to do a job for them with your product or with your solution.

And please remember to have fun on the way.

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