# Job-To-Be-Done > A job to be done is the instantiation of an unmet need or want. _Notes: One could argue that you could simplify this further: A job is an unmet need or want. This isn’t as actionable a definition. What differentiates a_ **_job_** from a  **_job to be done_** _is the time-boxed sense of urgency that a trigger creates towards fulfilling an unmet need or want. In other words, jobs could be aspirational nice to haves. Jobs-to-be-done, on the other hand, signal action._ ![](https://blog.leanstack.com/content/images/max/800/1-74LQCZxm-BqOTDlv7f_NWA.png) #### All jobs start with a [[Triggering Event]] We encounter triggering events throughout the day which means we encounter jobs to be done throughout the day too. - It’s 12:36 pm and my stomach is grumbling. I need to eat. - It’s 7:36 pm and my stomach is grumbling and it’s my wife’s birthday. I want to take her to a fancy restaurant. Triggers are what define the context that shapes the job to be done. _Notes: Progress doesn’t have to game-changing or aspirational. It could simply be taking me from being hungry to being fed._ #### [[Habit]] defines what we do most of the times Having to find new solutions for every trigger we encounter would generate too much cognitive load so we rely on existing alternatives most of the times (like where to eat lunch). _Notes: Some jtbd practitioners focus jtbd solely around the hiring and firing of products which implies buying or switching. I decouple a jtbd from a switch or a purchase. In other words, hiring doesn’t require switching. One could simply be reusing a previously purchased product to get a job done._ #### Until we encounter a [[Switching Trigger]] A switching trigger is a special trigger that comes with an **expectation violation**. That’s when we realize that our existing alternative(s) isn’t good enough to get the job done. That’s also when we seek new and different solutions. In the lunch example above, what could cause us to seek out a new restaurant: - a change in circumstance e.g. first day on a new job, - a bad experience e.g. food poisoning from the usual lunch spot, - an awareness event e.g. heard the new restaurant finally opened. _Notes: Triggers instantiate jobs to be done which favor familiar solutions (existing alternatives). Switching triggers create expectation violations which open spaces for new solutions._ #### Getting hired is only the first battle When prompted to switch, customers often evaluate and trial multiple products in search of the one that best gets their job done. Getting hired, while an important first step, is only the first step. Unless you can quickly deliver value (the aha-moment) and then establish yourself as the new status quo (the habit-moment), you could easily find yourself on the firing block. ![](https://blog.leanstack.com/content/images/max/800/1-qDet0dtLC48qT-h9uVa9nQ.png) _Notes: Getting a job done isn’t just about acquisition. Activation and retention are where the rubber hits the road._ In case you are wondering, [[Customer Forces vs. Customer Factory]] [[Needs versus Wants]] ## References - [Milkshake Study](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfGtw2C95Ms) popularized by Clayton Christensen.