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Impact Mapping

Updated: Feb 9



Impact Mapping

Impact Mapping is a strategic planning technique that helps teams visualize the "big picture" for their projects. It acts as a bridge between business goals and the deliverables necessary to achieve them. Gojko Adzic, the creator of Impact Mapping, defines it as:

 

"A strategic planning technique that not only questions the assumptions behind your initiatives but also opens new avenues for your team to achieve your business goals."

 

Essentially, Impact Mapping is a visual representation of:

Scope: This defines the specific deliverables and activities the team will focus on.

Underlying assumptions: These are the beliefs and expectations about how the deliverables will impact the actors and ultimately achieve the business goals.

 

How Does Impact Mapping Work?

Impact Mapping is a collaborative process that involves key stakeholders from both technical and business domains. It follows these four simple steps:

Goal Identification: Define the business objective or the "why" behind the project. This is the overarching goal that drives the entire effort.

Actor Identification: Identify the actors who can influence the outcome of the project. These are the "whos" who will be affected by the deliverables or who can contribute to achieving the goals.

Impact Definition: Determine how the actors can create an impact. This is the "how" the deliverables will influence the actors and contribute to the ultimate goal.

Deliverable Planning: Plan the deliverables necessary to support the required impacts. These are the "whats" that will be delivered to achieve the desired outcomes.

 

Impact Mapping offers several benefits:

Focus on Business Goals: It ensures that all efforts are aligned with the business objectives.

Collaborative Approach: It fosters collaboration between different stakeholders.

Flexible Scope: It allows for easy changes in the plan when necessary.

 

Impact Mapping and Agile

Impact Mapping aligns seamlessly with the Agile framework. It supports the core principles of:

 

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools: The collaborative nature of the mapping process emphasizes communication and interaction between stakeholders.

Responding to change over following a plan: The visual format of the map allows for quick adjustments to the plan as needed, ensuring the project remains flexible and adaptable.

By embracing the "Responding to change over following a plan" principle, Impact Mapping empowers teams to adapt their strategies based on feedback and evolving business conditions.

 

FAQs

1. What is the main purpose of Impact Mapping?

The main purpose of Impact Mapping is to ensure that all project activities are aligned with the business objectives. It helps teams focus on the ‘why’ before deciding on the ‘what’.

 

2. How does Impact Mapping fit into Agile methodologies?

Impact Mapping fits perfectly within Agile methodologies as it supports the principles of individuals and interactions over processes and tools, and responding to change over following a plan.

 

3. Can Impact Mapping be used for non-software projects?

Yes, Impact Mapping can be used for any project where you want to ensure that the work being done aligns with the overall business objectives.

 

In conclusion, Impact Mapping is a powerful tool that can help Agile teams stay focused on delivering real business value. It encourages collaboration and helps teams respond effectively to changes. By using Impact Mapping, teams can ensure that they are always working towards the right goals and delivering the most value.

 

Agilinks is a forward-thinking Agile Coaching and IT services company specializing in end-to-end Digital Transformation. We work with organizations globally, aiming to be a leading player in Agile execution.

Visit www.agilinks.com for SAFe insights or contact us at contact@agilinks.com for Agile training and consulting services. We're also on the lookout for skilled agile trainers for our non-SAFe courses. So, reach out if you're interested in joining us on our agility journey.

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