Identify opportunities for growth by deconstructing a job that customers are trying to get done. 

👥 The whole team can participate | ⏰ about 1 hour


Writing Job Stories is a powerful way of evaluating the circumstances that arise in customers’ lives.

Customers make decisions about what products to use because they find themselves with a problem they would like to solve. 

With an understanding of the “job” for which customers find themselves “hiring” a product or service, we can more accurately develop and market products and features well-tailored to what customers are already trying to do. 


When writing job stories it’s important to focus on things such as context, causality and motivations instead of assumptions, subjectiveness, personas and implementations. 

We start by framing each design problem as a job, focusing on the triggering event or situation, the progress and motivation, and the intended outcome: 

[ Situation statement ] + [ Progress statement ] + [ Outcome statement ] . 

Example: [When I’m running late for an appt & worried that I won’t be able to eat before], [I want something filling to eat on the go], [so that I have the energy to perform]. 

Tips for writing effective job stories: 

Refine A Situation By Adding Contextual Information 

The more context we have for the situation, the easier it will be to craft a working solution which also handles any anxieties which can push a customer away from using a product or feature.. 

Job Stories Come From Real People Not Personas 

Job stories should be derived from real customer feedback. You must talk to real people and uncover all the anxieties and contexts which were in play when they used your or a competitor’s product. Additionally, comb through any existing research you have on your users, pulling out any contextual or emotional data that might aid you in writing your job stories. 

Design Modular Job Stories Which Features (solutions) Can Plug Into 

When writing job stories, it’s important not to commingle the job with solutions. Doing so makes it difficult to figure out what went wrong when customers reject our ideas. Was your persona wrong? Was the feature wrong? Was it the wrong feature for the persona? 

Add Forces To Motivations 

In the job story format of Situation — Motivations — Expected Outcomes, the Motivation stage can be enhanced by adding pull and push forces. Adding forces to a motivation is much like adding context to a situation. It’s the emotional component of the job story. By getting in touch with the emotions the customer is feeling we can design solutions that mitigate them.