Issue 9

My moral imperative behind the creative commons nature of mapping is to free us from the consultants that enslave us with mystic strategy blah. Welcome to the rebellion.

 — Simon Wardley
Welcome to Mapping Maps! Resuming the newsletter after a break, here's sharing with you the best of curated stuff on mapping. 

As always, let's begin with key learnings of the last month -

PST Organization

Check here for pointers on how to model PST based teams with Simon hinting ideas on appropriate team size for each group,  experimentation, ecosystems and so on -  

"The whole point of the pioneer-settler-town planner structure is to replicate evolution (caused by competition) within an organisation."

Check out this edition of the newsletter from earlier this year for more ideas on hacking organizational design.

Mapping Culture

Leading from PST to the question of mapping culture. An excellent write-up on complexities of taming culture and eventually defines culture as a construct built on constructs. A layered thing made up of many components and hence a candidate for mapping.

"Culture (as with other forms of capital) in an organisation would not only be a set of evolving components that interact but also a consequence of past actions (i.e. loops). The choices of today being limited by past contexts and decisions. This means that culture cannot be measured against some standard because it is dependent upon the landscape, varies with history and is inherently emergent in the same way that strategy is."

Check out this thread for more ideas on the subject.

Innovation by the Kilo?

You'll find here insights on the topic of measuring performance vs focusing on outcomes and knowing when to do what.

"As the act becomes more defined it changes to more COTS and then finally more utility / per unit basis. But this is purchasing (how we buy something) which is not the same as performance (how we achieve something). Mix those up and you'll be trying to buy innovation by the kilo."

Y-Axis Demystified

More reasoning for the rest of us to let go of the Y-axis. Simon makes the point that when depicting multiple value chains in a single map the visibility of the same component across the two chains may vary. As is the case with power component in the above map.

"How does being more visible down one line of the chain and being less visible down another line up with the axis which simply goes from invisible to visible? Well the key is to realize that the y-axis is purely scaffolding or training wheels for those getting started. It's not some absolute scale. It can be happily removed."

Check here for another related thread and go here for an excellent piece on the topic by Chris Daniel.

Mapping Tech Debt

Technical debt mapped and defined simply as -

"As a delta between where something is and where it should be. Also, because you can mark capital flow on a map, you can even calculate cost / impact of technical debt."

What you have to understand is that people are trapped by past context. They're not daft, they're doing stuff because at some point it made good sense. If you can't show the context, it's really hard for them to break out of it.

 — Simon Wardley

The Why of Mapping

Ben Mosior curates here a variety of responses from the community to his question - "If Mapping is the solution, what is the problem?". Lots of interesting perspectives listed there. Here's my favourite one shared by Jessica Joy Kerr

"In the OODA Loop, how do we Orient?  And how do we co-orient?"

Mapping Applied

Another favourite of this month was Rachel Murphy sharing stories of her applying mapping to solve a variety of problems. Here's a good one to find out if it actually made sense to build a company or not -

"I used it to map whether there was space in the market to create @BeDifrent and whether our USP's would be welcomed"

Mapping takes practice, it's rarely something that you magically can do. You're dealing with many components and actors on a single landscape. Even in military history, the simplest maps can be overwhelming for many.

 — Simon Wardley


Here's a collection of some interesting maps shared in the community this month -

Mapping Security

Check this thread and here and here for a number of informative maps on security strategy, threat landscape, incident management, GDPR & so on.

Further, check this video where Ben talks with Mario Platt on the current state of security.

Mapping Business Dynamics

Shared by Alastair Moore while looking at maps from the lens of Business Dynamics.

Mapping IoT

Michael Nelson using maps shares his prediction on where the "war" in the IoT space may be fought in the future.

Mapping Ethereum

A map of the Ethereum ecosystem composed of multiple sub-maps and layers with the goal -

"... to be able to understand how the ecosystem works today and where it might be moving. Most importantly, how does this let you make strategic decisions for your startup or your self."

If you're not ready to listen, to have someone tear your map to pieces and to learn from that experience ... then you're not ready to teach.

 — Simon Wardley

Mapping Videos

Videos of the Map Camp 2019, that took place in Atlanta in April, are now available. Check out the playlist here with some awesome lineup of videos to watch.

For even more amazing video content on maps, have a look at Ben's channel. For insightful interviews with the community go here to the Wardley Maps channel.
It's not the map (that's useful), it's not even the discussions, discovery and alignment that results from the process of creating a map (that's really useful) ... it's the community around mapping itself that is priceless.

Simon Wardley


Check this twitter thread for Wardley Maps learning resources collated by the community. Many thanks to Julius Gamanyi for mentioning the Mapping Maps Newsletter :-)

Mapscript is a way to programatically create Wardley Maps.  A fascinating project by Adam B. Play with the ide here and more discussions here and here.

The Book
Good news for those of us who would like to read Wardley Maps book on their favorite book readers. The book is now available in ebook formats on Leanpub. Check this project for a more DIY approach.

More Reading
A couple of interesting finds of the month can be found here - Mapping Mondays and Agile Trends. Check this interesting podcast with Aidan Molloy on his journey of learning and creating maps for product management.
Curated with 🧡 by Harprit
I would love to hear your feedback -
Wardley Mapping is provided courtesy of Simon Wardley, CC BY-SA 4.0 

view this email in your browser


This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Mapping Maps Newsletter · Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6 · Singapore 560640 · Singapore

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp