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The Innovator's Toolkit: 50+ Techniques for Predictable and Sustainable Organic Growth, 2nd Edition by Neil DeCarlo, Philip Samuel, David Silverstein

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Technique 9

Job Scoping

Broaden or narrow your innovation focus.

 

Job scoping ensures that the innovation opportunity is effectively targeted at an actionable level. If the project scope seems too broad, job scoping helps you drill down a level by identifying obstacles that could keep you from achieving your goal. If the scope is too narrow, job scoping moves the focus up a level to explore the reason why (what for) you're working on the innovation problem in the first place. Whichever road you later follow, job scoping will help you see the innovation opportunity from a different point of view.

Scoping an innovation project is important because the way you define the opportunity, or the job to be done (JTBD), can make the difference between a run-of-the-mill solution and a truly innovative approach. A careful innovation practitioner will note some similarity between job scoping and the systems and spatial aspects of Nine Windows (Technique 8), and Heuristic Redefinition (Technique 7), in the analysis of broader and narrower issues. But the techniques differ mainly in job scoping's and heuristic redefinition's focus on problems versus nine window's focus on solutions.

Steps

Scenario: Interviews and preliminary Ethnographic studies (Technique 5) have shown that many business travelers struggle with the timeliness and ease of submitting expense reports (the JTBD) after completing a business trip. Many misplace their receipts, carry inconvenient adhesives for sticking receipts on ...

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