Impact Mapping is an engaging, graphical, strategic planning technique. It was introduced by Gojko Adzic in 2012. At the end of the impact map, you should have:
- A shared understand of your effort's goal or problem statement
- An inventory of human behavioral changes that must occur (or not occur) for your project to be successful. These are the impact from which the technique gets it name
- Optionally, an inventory of project scope that could be delivered to achieve the aforementioned impacts
- Some sort of prioritization of scope and/or impacts
- A physical or digital diagram with the above information
Who do you need?
- Product Owner
- Project Sponsor, both technical and business
For the shortened variation:
- 2-4 hours of prep to establish a goal or problem statement before the session. This is important, or your session will go sideways!
- optionally - 2 hours before the session to create an outline of the Impact Map based on your current understanding, as a way to introduce the subject to participants
- ~4 Hours to facilitate the session, not including breaks
- Facilitate in small sessions @ around 60-90 minutes each
- Session can be done on different days
For the executive level session format, see the Impact Mapping book in the links section below.
- Facilitator: Moderate
- Participants: Easy
Facilitation Materials Needed
- a tool capability of building mind map like visualisations, for example Miro, Mural or Coggle (check the links section below).
- a large whiteboard
- whiteboard markers
- sticky notes
- markers for stickies
How does it fit?
- Typically done in the Why area of the Discovery of the Open Practice Library
Tips for remote sessions
Remote facilitation doesn’t differ much from the face to face, but you need to be more clear on the preparation of the draft GOAL done by your Product Owner.
It works well if you have stakeholders and a multifunctional team, but it could be difficult to gather all data in one session. You can evaluate to running the practice 2 to 3 times with an interval between each iteration to allow people to review and fill the gaps.
The facilitator will become a single point of failure if he/she is the only one updating the map.
You probably need more time than the one it takes for a face-to face session.
Be sure everyone is aware of commands to move multiple sticky-notes in a large map.
- Start At The End is another practice which leads to the same outputs. Compared to Start At The End, Impact Mapping produces a higher fidelity understanding of the domain, but at the cost of increased complexity for facilitation. Generally speaking, Impact Mapping is the better fit when building products or services, and Start At The End is a better fit when discussing organizational change or other generally nebulous efforts.