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Henry Ford’s famous quote serves
as a battle cry to many a visionary
entrepreneur who swears against
asking customers what...
”It’s really hard to design
products by focus groups. A
lot of times, people don’t
know what they want until
you show it t...
There is often a gap between what focus group participants say and do, small samples can’t
be generalised, participants ha...
SO WHAT IF YOU’RE NOT
BLESSED WITH STEVE JOBS’
VISION?
Most entrepreneurs must instead rely on the
ability to identify problems and find cheap
and quick ways to test and iterate...
These entrepreneurs don’t
start off with a grand vision.
Oftentimes they start off with
what they think is a problem
and w...
So, what did it really
mean if customers had
said that they wanted
faster horses?
Closer inspection of Ford’s quote reveals
something a lot more profound, particularly
for innovators and product managers.
Ultimately, Henry Ford did give his
customers exactly what they wanted.
He gave them faster transportation.
Faster transportation
was essentially their ‘job
to be done’ and getting
to this answer might
have been as simple as
askin...
Knowing what the
underlying problem and
need is gives entrepreneurs
a much higher chance of
success in developing a
soluti...
It sounds simple but given that more than 90% of startups fail,
perhaps the concept isn’t widely acknowledged, understood ...
SO HOW DOES ONE
IDENTIFY JOBS TO BE
DONE?
1. Question, Observe, Network and
Experiment
According to The Innovator’s Method,
we must first question, observe,
network...
Ask questions of customers, co-workers,
suppliers, partners, family, friends and so on.
Ask open-ended questions. Ask why....
Being able to think laterally and draw
examples from one industry that can
be applied in another, often lends
itself to in...
2. Painstorming
Painstorming, is used to map the
customer journey, identify pain points,
root causes and assumptions
under...
3. Walk In Your Customer's Shoes
No technique helps you understand your customer's pain points better than walking a
mile ...
4. Problem and Solution Discussion
Once you have an idea of what the problems facing
your customers are and a relative ide...
When you’ve done that do the same with
your solution. It’s important that you have a
firm grasp of the problems you’re try...
Instead of building products that nobody
wants, take the time that’s necessary up
front to walk a mile in your customer’s
...
Steve Glaveski
Steve Glaveski is co-founder and Chief Innovation Consultant at
Collective Campus. Steve spent time working...
Henry Ford's Customers Didn't Want a Faster Horse
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Henry Ford's Customers Didn't Want a Faster Horse

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"If I had asked my customers what they wanted they would have said a faster horse.” We have all heard Henry Ford’s famous quote many times before and it serves as a battle cry to many a visionary entrepreneur who swears against asking customers what they want.

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Henry Ford's Customers Didn't Want a Faster Horse

  1. 1. Henry Ford’s famous quote serves as a battle cry to many a visionary entrepreneur who swears against asking customers what they want.
  2. 2. ”It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” - Steve Jobs
  3. 3. There is often a gap between what focus group participants say and do, small samples can’t be generalised, participants have varying motivations, introverts lose their voice and group leaders can influence the direction of discussions.
  4. 4. SO WHAT IF YOU’RE NOT BLESSED WITH STEVE JOBS’ VISION?
  5. 5. Most entrepreneurs must instead rely on the ability to identify problems and find cheap and quick ways to test and iterate on the underlying assumptions in order to get to product market fit before the well runs dry.
  6. 6. These entrepreneurs don’t start off with a grand vision. Oftentimes they start off with what they think is a problem and what they think a solution to that problem might be and iterate from there.
  7. 7. So, what did it really mean if customers had said that they wanted faster horses?
  8. 8. Closer inspection of Ford’s quote reveals something a lot more profound, particularly for innovators and product managers.
  9. 9. Ultimately, Henry Ford did give his customers exactly what they wanted. He gave them faster transportation.
  10. 10. Faster transportation was essentially their ‘job to be done’ and getting to this answer might have been as simple as asking why they wanted a faster horse.
  11. 11. Knowing what the underlying problem and need is gives entrepreneurs a much higher chance of success in developing a solution that fills that need.
  12. 12. It sounds simple but given that more than 90% of startups fail, perhaps the concept isn’t widely acknowledged, understood or adopted.
  13. 13. SO HOW DOES ONE IDENTIFY JOBS TO BE DONE?
  14. 14. 1. Question, Observe, Network and Experiment According to The Innovator’s Method, we must first question, observe, network and experiment. Engage and think broadly.
  15. 15. Ask questions of customers, co-workers, suppliers, partners, family, friends and so on. Ask open-ended questions. Ask why. Network aggressively with people from inside and outside your industry. Read lots of different blogs and magazines. Step outside of the realm of familiarity and get interested in lots of different subject matter.
  16. 16. Being able to think laterally and draw examples from one industry that can be applied in another, often lends itself to innovation. These tools will put you in a position to better identify potential problems to be solved
  17. 17. 2. Painstorming Painstorming, is used to map the customer journey, identify pain points, root causes and assumptions underlying key problems. Begin with your problem hypotheses using jobs to be done, perform root cause analysis and focus on key assumptions underlying the root causes.
  18. 18. 3. Walk In Your Customer's Shoes No technique helps you understand your customer's pain points better than walking a mile in their shoes. Truly immerse yourself in the day in, day out activities of your customers. Doing so should reveal lots of insights, potential opportunities and give you a better appreciation for the size of problems.
  19. 19. 4. Problem and Solution Discussion Once you have an idea of what the problems facing your customers are and a relative idea of your solution, discuss this with your customer. Show them what you think the key problems are, get them to rank the problems and confirm whether or not you’ve missed any major pain points.
  20. 20. When you’ve done that do the same with your solution. It’s important that you have a firm grasp of the problems you’re trying to solve, the magnitude of the problem and what the reaction to your initial solution hypotheses is. What you are ultimately looking for is a pain that is big enough (i.e. affecting more than enough people to build a sustainable and scalable business on) and a solution that solves this problem for less than what it costs to deliver.
  21. 21. Instead of building products that nobody wants, take the time that’s necessary up front to walk a mile in your customer’s shoes, gain a true appreciation for customer pain points and then think about developing a solution. You might just end up saving yourself a lot of time, money and heartache.
  22. 22. Steve Glaveski Steve Glaveski is co-founder and Chief Innovation Consultant at Collective Campus. Steve spent time working at the likes of Macquarie Bank, Ernst & Young and KPMG, before embarking upon his own entrepreneurial journey, founding Hotdesk, an office sharing platform with almost 1,200 locations across AsiaPac. Steve is also a startup mentor, innovation writer, and keynote speaker, and is also a board member of AgTech, a federal government funded initiative driving agricultural innovation. Want to learn more? Book Collective Campus Co-Founder Steve Glaveski, for a FREE 30-minute call about challenges facing innovation in your organisation. BOOK NOW.

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