If you wish to start using Jobs to Be Done theory to help your customers make progress with better services and products, but you don’t know what to actually do to come up with Jobs, this article is for you.

There are 2 stages to applying Jobs. First understand the customer through interviews. Then, distil insights and articulate the jobs.

All implementations of Jobs theory share core concepts, such as emphasis on causation and summarizing insights in a template. But Jobs theory doesn’t prescribe any specific tools. Each practitioner develops their own tools for extracting insights and formulas for articulating…


Jobs to Be Done gives CEOs, Marketers, Product Managers, and Experience Designers a unified way to think about business strategy, customer research, and experience design. This article is a summary of basic Jobs to Be Done concepts based on Clay Christensen’s Competing Against Luck.

The Big Idea: Target the circumstances, not the customer

Jobs Theory originated with the question of What causes someone to buy a product or service?

Christensen’s conclusion after years of observation is that customers hire products and services when particular circumstances arise in their lives.

“Companies that target their products at the circumstances in which customers find themselves, rather than at the customers themselves, are…


This is a hypothetical interview, where I ask questions and quote answers from Bob Moesta’s book, Demand-Side Sales 101 (Buy it on Amazon).

What it means to be a sales person

Vlad: How would you define the job of a sales person?

Bob Moesta: “Your job as a salesperson is to help people make progress on their terms… Salespeople don’t convince people to buy, people convince themselves. They buy for their own reasons. The customer defines the value. You need understand them first, and then your product and how it fits into their lives.”

Vlad: At one point the book, you say to provide the customer with options…


Most things in life get done through trial and error, and digital products need to support that sort of fuzziness.

What scares people about technology is that it’s precise and uncompromising. A bank machine asks you for THE number — you can’t type anything else and nothing happens until you do. When you turn a dial on a washing machine, it does exactly and only what you choose. At the other extreme, automated systems take all control away from us.

The beauty of machines is that machines don’t lie. They just do what they are programmed to do. But that’s…

Vlad Malik

Designer & Strategist

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