Impact map

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  • have participants bring their own case and present it and ‘sell’ it to the others so it gets selected as the case study for the day.

You want to come up with the right user stories and here’s what makes this particular user story right for us now. behavior changes you want to cause

The quest of great products is delivering what’s really important, what is needed.

to measure the value of information is to basically make it proportional to the value of the decision that it informs


  • people tend to measure things that are easy and cheap to measure, not things that are valuable to measure

Impact Mapping is:

  • collaborative;
  • visual; and
  • fast; as well as:
  • a structured conversation that then results in a mind map that is a visualization of:
    • business assumptions,
    • business objectives,
    • stake holders; and
    • ultimately scope; and
    • impact you are trying to achieve;
  • inspired by Gib-Weisbord-Drexler model.

Changes perspective and mentality:

  • from thinking about cost to thinking about budgeting;
  • from cost to investment.


  • assumptions (takes out risk);
  • start with defining good business goals and then making sure that the scope that gets delivered is derived from those business goals; generate user stories from that starting point
  • Impact Mapping is based on community organization techniques that people developed in the 60’s.
  • based on some good ways of adopting training through organizations to deliver business results that Robert Brinkerhoff wrote about
  • it’s not really software specific at all
  • requires a cross functional group of senior business and technical people to align their expectations and visualize their assumptions together and it uses a collaboration model
  • first described by Gib, Weisbord and Drexler in their work on getting communities to kind of plug better, which is asking for basic questions

Questions that matter

  • Why are we doing this?
  • Who do we need to help?
  • Who are our consumers?
  • Who are our stake holders?
  • How does their behavior change as the result of what we do?
  • How does what we do need to impact them or what impacts are we creating?
  • What can we do as an organization to cause those impacts?