Founder’s Story: Whoever Understands the Job that Customers Want to get Done Best, Wins

In 1998, I accepted a job as a principal consultant with a strategy firm. A big part of my work entailed interviewing our clients’ customers using the Voice of the Customer (VoC) research approach to help clients improve their services and operations. (VoC is a well-known market research method for capturing customer needs to guide product development).

But as global competition increased, the need for innovation, as opposed to product improvements, increased as well. In response to this, I did my best to adapt VoC methods to capture customer needs to guide innovation, but with only mixed results.

Then I became aware of the jobs-to-be-done (JTBD) innovation approach pioneered by Strategyn, and further advanced and popularized by Professor Clayton Christensen at the Harvard Business School. I saw how this approach resolved the limitations of VoC and improved the effectiveness of other approaches to deliver dramatically better results. (Today, those other approaches include Design Thinking, Lean Startup and Google Sprints).

The jobs-to-be-done innovation approach enables companies to master the front end of innovation with unprecedented precision and clarity so all customer value creation activities downstream are more effective, such as generating ideas, developing new products, competitive analysis, brand messaging and positioning, and sales.

Once I saw the effectiveness of JTBD, realized I had only two options: either get out of innovation and growth strategy consulting or work with Strategyn. Fortunately, the latter option worked out and I joined Strategyn in 2006, working there for six and a half years honing my skills.

I started Reveal in 2012 to expand upon the breakthroughs in the innovation process that Strategyn pioneered. While we bring deep expertise in the JTBD approach, we never impose our process on clients. We craft each growth strategy according to our client’s unique objectives and situation to optimize results.

We know what type of information to obtain from your target customers and how to get it. You’ll find that, once you have these customer insights (that competitors are unlikely to have), creating winning new offerings becomes remarkably straightforward. This is because the best creativity trigger is, indeed, a well-defined customer need.