The Customer-Centered Innovation Map

by Lance A. Bettencourt and Anthony W. Ulwick

WE ALL KNOW THAT people “hire” products and services to get a job done. Office workers hire word-processing software to create documents and digital recorders to capture meeting notes. Surgeons hire scalpels to dissect soft tissue and electrocautery devices to control patient bleeding. Janitors hire soap dispensers, paper towels, and cleansing fluid to help remove grime from their hands.

While all this seems obvious, very few companies use the perspective of “getting the job done” to discover opportunities for innovation. In fact, the innovation journey for many companies is little more than hopeful wandering through customer interviews. Such unsystematic inquiry ...

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