The Birth of Jobs to be Done Theory (Spring 2000)

Here’s a glimpse of when I introduced professor Clay Christensen to ODI and Jobs-to-be-Done Theory before it was called Jobs-to-be-Done. In the weeks leading up to the “Solving the Innovator’s Dilemma” event, I had met with Clay a number of times. I had the opportunity to show him our Outcome-Driven Innovation process and several examples of its … Continue Reading

Why Ideas Don’t Solve Problems

The goal of innovation is straightforward: to come up with solutions that address unmet customer needs. Today’s most popular approaches to innovation fall into one of two types: those that begin with a focus on solutions (or ideas) and those that begin with a focus on customer needs. In what I call the “ideas-first” approach, … Continue Reading

3 Reasons Why Idea-Driven Innovation Fails

Despite its popularity, academic support, and widespread use, the ideas-first approach to innovation cannot be counted on for predictable growth and is inherently doomed to failure. There are three reasons for this: First, generating more ideas does not meaningfully improve the probability that someone will come up with the optimal idea to satisfy unmet customer … Continue Reading

Why do Innovation Projects Fail?

In order to accurately determine the success rate for traditional innovation processes we can examine reports from 12 different sources, including the Harvard Business Review, the consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, the professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, the Product Development Management Association (PDMA), the Corporate Strategy Board and others. Frost & Sullivan reported (i) that only one … Continue Reading