I’ve had some really useful conversations today around the map, with Cecilia Weckstrom from LEGO and Julie Doleman from Experian. They were both chats about other things, but both times we used the cards to think about ways in which changing one particular thing can impact on other parts of the matrix.
I’d brought a couple of LEGO minifigs with me to talk to Cecilia about the idea of using them in empathy mapping (which I’ve talked about before here), but we actually played around with using one of them as a representation of an idea across the matrix… a piece on the game board, perhaps?
For instance, say that you decided to target a particular customer who wants a really pared-back, no-frills version of your product. You use the LEGO minifig to describe that customer more; what she wants, what pressures in her life are making her think about this, what she sees others around her using, and so on.
Then you place her on the matrix where you might start to try and solve the problem.
In this example, you state that it’s a structural issue, because you need a new type of factory that can make a cheaper version of the product for you; the proposed solution is to have a new factory in China.
By starting in one particular place, against CUSTOMER and STRUCTURES, you can start to question the other things that happen as a result throughout the business…
Going to the faster layers (down & right), perhaps you get more obvious granular effect questions.
What are the commercial benefits that emerge? Does it just produce a new line of revenue, or does it cannibalise existing revenue streams. What actions do your people now undertake more of as a result of having to deal with a factory in China. What additional infrastructure and services do you need to change your operation?
Going to the slower layers (up and left), the questions that emerge seem to be more conceptual, harder to immediately resolve, more actually more important for the long run business.
What impact does opening a factory in China have on the areas surrounding your current factories? Do existing customers who live around these places support the decision? How will leadership justify this in the surrounding culture? What can existing factories learn from this new factory? Are there opportunities to improve the way these existing factories are run by the leaders in that business?
I’m going to try a few more scenarios, on different places across the map, to see if this pattern (down & right asks fast and functional questions, up and right asks slower, conceptual questions) is something that’s always true because of the way the layers are structured.
If anyone else wants to give it a go, please do. The layers as I’ve named them today are:
ORGANISATION, LEADERSHIP, CUSTOMER, COMMERCE, ACTIONS
SURROUNDINGS, STRUCTURES, INFRASTRUCTURES, SERVICES, MATERIALS
You don’t need Artefact Cards to do it, of course, just whatever you have to hand. But doing it in physical space is definitely recommended.
As is building LEGO customers 🙂
ACTION 14: BUILD AND PLAY WITH YOUR OWN VERSION OF THE MAP.