20191010 - LASCOT2019 - Going deeper with maps, Simon Wardley @swardley

by Thierry de Pauw on


Going deeper with maps, Simon Wardley @swardley

@swardley: THOUGHT LORD and DevOPPER in training (thought @CatSwetel says I might get a promotion to Junior DevOPPER 😂

I like maps. I'm going to talk a lot about maps, the origin of my maps,

Blah + the Blah template => generates 64 blah strategies @swardley

  • @fijiaaron: RT @lunivore: “This is 2014; big data, disruptive, collaborative, ecosystem, blah blah blah. What words do you hear today?” Crowd: “Kubernetes.” “AI.” “Mapping!” (@swardley facepalms) #lascot

Strategy as a Service: http://strategy-madlibs.herokuapp.com @swardley

I started reading books about Strategy: The Strategy Cycle, Sun Tzu


Sun Tzu's five factors
John Boyd's OODA loop
The two types of why: why of movement and the why of purpose => Movement is learning @swardley

It is all about mapping the landscape

If you can't see the landscape, it is Gut Feel and then you end up with blah strategy @swardley

The problem with a story is if you desagree with the story, you disagree with the story teller. You are saying he is wrong. @swardley

  • @CatSwetel: "if you disagree with the story, you are actually disagreeing with me because I am the story teller...maps are a great way of depersonalizing" @swardley for me, this is one of the most important things about mapping. #lascot

maps are a great way to depersonalise the story. @swardley

What is a map?

  • @cacorriere: This is new! How many words does it take to describe movement on this map of a Roman city? Over 20k. Note: I love old maps, especially Roman ones... 💯🔥 #lascot https://t.co/xFa5R0oPA2

If you don't have maps, you get back to gut feel and thus to blah strategy @swardley

@swardley: What would you use to communicate and determine strategy in battle? position and movement or magic framework?
X: position and framework
@swardley: What does business use?
X: magic framework


Public has a need:
Cup of Tea

Cup of Tea has also needs:
- cup, tea, hot water -> Kettle -> Power

this is what we call a chain of needs

How do we get movement? => need for an anchor
bring the chain of needs on a map
=> partial ordered chain of needs

Scaffolding: Y-axis - visibility: visible at the top, invisible at the bottom

Movement: X-axis going from Novel to Commodity

Diffusion of Innovation (Crossing the Chasm)

there is no correlation between adoption and correlation
=> you have to cross the chasm multiple times => multiple diffusion curves

  • @cacorriere: No clear correlation between adoption & correlation until the early adopters to laggards in each domain of the map emerged from the data #lascot https://t.co/xmj2j91nV2

Publication types (different stages):
- wonder
- building, construction and awareness
- operation, maintenance, feature differences
- use

=> certainty axis

Activities: Genesis, Custom Built, Product, Commodity

  • @cacorriere: The labels on these domains get swapped around all the time, but only 2 on this chart have some ontological issues due to value judgement 😁 #lascot https://t.co/NZ78ZVAxdQ

=> Y-axis position (visibility) + X-axis movement (evolution) => here you are you have a map

different words for X-axis: the cheat sheet (Creative Commons)

  • @CatSwetel: @swardley just touched on one of my other favorite things about maps, they are an antidote to strategy gatekeeping. no MBA necessary. #lascot

everybody saying the waste in public sector is unacceptable obviously never worked in private sector. @swardley

if somebody uses something that is custom build but is in fact a commodity, start using the commodity
=> that is called evolutionary flow @swardley

  • @cacorriere: I think I was aware of process flow vs evolutionary flow but I like this delineation & the language used to describe it #lascot 💯 https://t.co/P8XFyxj88Q

How do you create a perfect map?

maps are never perfect and also all maps are based on models and as all models are wrong, maps are wrong @swardley

  • @SteveSmithCD: "All maps are imperfect, and wrong" @swardley #lascot


climatic patterns
doctrine patterns
leadership: gameplay patterns - context depended ways of manipulating the game

climatic patterns:
- everything evolves
- past success breeds inertia

example: Blockbuster vs Netflix
who was first with a website? Blockbuster
who was first with online video ordering? Blockbuster
who was first with streaming? Blockbuster
who went backrupt? Blockbuster
Why? inertia in strategy

Do I want to improve Process Flow or do I concentrate on the Evolutionary Flow?
you always concentrate on evolutionary flow

  • @kjscotland: I like @swardley’s distinction between Evolutionary Flow and Process Flow. Don’t try and do the wrong thing righter. #lascot

Game patterns: IRL
Example: Amazon - build a commodity, analyses the usage, other companies innovate on the platform, with he usage analysis, amazon grows the platform => more innovation, more customer centricity


Climatic patterns
- characteristics change

the stuff on the right handside should be outsourced, the stuff on the left should be developed in-house using agile techniques #wardleymaps @swardley

Fallacy: Next time we need to specify it better. (You cannot specify what you don't know) @swardley

Paul Strassman: no correlation between IT spending and value




The good thing about maps is that we can challenge each other. @swardley