The Products We Hire


Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice by Clayton Christensen, Taddy Hall, Karen Dillon, and David Duncan
Harper Business, October 4, 2016

For the entrepreneur: Why do customers decide to buy one product over another? For the hungry commuter: Why might somone buy a milkshake on his drive to work rather than grabbing a bagel? And for the independent school leader: Why do students and their families decide to attend one school rather than pursuing an alternative option? In the book Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice, Clayton Christensen, the author of Disruptive Innovation, returns with co-authors Taddy Hall, Karen Dillon, and David Duncan to elaborate on "Jobs-to-be-done" theory. Jobs Theory, the authors explain, is a framework that aims to explore why consumers hire products and services to perform a certain function – a job – in their lives. Through stories that range from McDonalds' milkshakes to the rise of Southern New Hampshire University, the authors compel readers to critique their own understanding of a jobs' primary function while offering an enlightened view on how we can better understand the competitive landscape within which products and services exist. With implications that range from admissions and enrollment management to student engagement, Competing Against Luck is a captivating read for educational leaders interested in exploring theories in strategic innovation.

Submitted By: Sean Duncan, The Winchendon School | Brooklyn, Brooklyn, New York

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