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The What and Why of Wardley mapping

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A lot goes into creating a strategy - market data, competitor information, current performance evaluation, vision, mission, values and on and on.

The creator of Wardley Maps, Simon Wardley, argues we need a map, not a SWOT. Maps help us with situational awareness so we can see movement in the future and maps are important in deciding on actions.

Kim Ballestrin of elabor8, put together this presentation to run product peeps through the concept of Wardley Mapping, how to use it for decision making and some examples of how others have used this type of mapping.

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The What and Why of Wardley mapping

  1. 1. The What and Why of Wardley Mapping
  2. 2. 2 Strategy – Tactics - Operations What to keep in-house Outsourcing Decommissioning Extending – adding new features Update – modernise Decisions
  3. 3. Senior Leader ‘We need to commoditise ‘X’ Teams ‘But we have a very specific need’ Both can be right 3 How would we find that out?
  4. 4. Wardley Mapping was created by Simon Wardley and is IP protected under Creative Commons 3.0 Share Alike More details about attribution can be found on Simon’s blog site https://blog.gardeviance.org/2015/01/how-to-refer-to-mapping.html 4
  5. 5. 5 Why should we create a Wardley Map? Just like an ordinary map, a Wardley map helps us to know where we are now and make good decisions about where to go to next It is a way of visualising the systems, functions and features that support our Customer or user needs
  6. 6. 6 How to create a Wardley Map? Place the need at the top of the map Place the functions and features that support that need underneath the need from most visible to the Customer/user at the top (e.g. website) to least visible to the Customer/user at the bottom (e.g. Oracle Database) Identify a user or Customer need Keep these simple and small scale – better to create multiple maps than one great big map
  7. 7. 7 How to Create a Wardley Map Buy a Book List of books Shop Computer terminal in Shop Display List Website Visibility • Identify a Customer or User Need • Add the features/functions supporting that need
  8. 8. 8 How to create a Wardley Map? • Genesis at the very left (for items that no-one has built before and you need to create) • Custom built – (others have built it, but it needs to be customised to suit your needs) • Product or rental (you can use it as it comes) • Commodity/Utility (it is ubiquitous and standardised – such as electricity) Spread out the functions and features from left to right across the map (4 major stages)
  9. 9. 9 How to Create a Wardley Map Buy a Book List of books Shop Computer terminal in Shop Display List Website Visibility Genesis Custom Product Commodity Customer Device in Shop Internet Interface to ISBN System Website Host
  10. 10. 10 Start Your Own Wardley Map Choose a social media platform that most of your group are familiar with – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc… Start with the need to capture and protect personal data – put this at the top Populate underneath with the features and functions that could be used to capture and manage personal data – most visible at the top and least visible at the bottom • No more than 10 items
  11. 11. 11 Start Your Own Wardley Map Spread the items out from left to right Genesis Custom Product Commodity Add in more items if it makes sense – no more than 15 in total Draw the lines linking the items together
  12. 12. 12 Outcomes from Wardley Mapping For example • Are we handcrafting software that everyone else buys ‘off the shelf’ – like a CRM system • Have we outsourced something that should be brought back in- house? Such as specialised configuration to support research needs (the overhead to manage contracts/vendors could be significant) Once we have a map of the current state, have a good look at it and see if that makes sense for the future.
  13. 13. 13 Making Decisions Buy a Book List of books Shop Computer terminal in Shop Display List Website Visibility Genesis Custom Product Commodity Customer Device in Shop Internet Interface to ISBN System Website Host Replace Manual List with Automated Inventory Management
  14. 14. 14 Which Items Require Decisions? Going from top to bottom of the Wardley Map • Note which items require decision/s to be made • Note the decision/s to make • Note any assumptions about either the decision or the item itself Item Decision Y/N Decision/s to be made Assumptions Y/N Assumption/s description
  15. 15. 15 Some Other Ways to use Wardley Maps The whole landscape – what are our competitors doing? Processes (from no standard process to highly standardised processes) – and value chains Maturity Mapping – Great idea and blog post by Chris McDermott https://medium.com/@chrisvmcd/mapping-maturity-create-context-specific-maturity-models-with-wardley- maps-informed-by-cynefin-37ffcd1d315 Many more – Simon is keen for people to apply, adapt and innovate with Wardley Mapping
  16. 16. 16 Potential Pitfalls Trying to draw the perfect Wardley Map Mapping the whole thing Different levels of granularity Not using Wardley Mapping (and therefore not having sufficient situational awareness for good decision-making)
  17. 17. 17 More Information Simon is publishing his book at this site – a great amount of useful information https://medium.com/wardleymaps Keynote recordings from conferences – this one was at Lean Agile Scotland https://vimeo.com/189984496 Keep your eyes open for ‘Map Camps’ – conferences focused on Wardley Mapping (or start one)

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