The Art of Strategy: Wardley Mapping Examples

Annex: A diverse atlas of valuable maps

Image for post
Photo: Chris Lawton on Unsplash

What is strategy? Why do you need it? How do you do it? And, how can you be more certain to succeed? The Art of Strategy provides timeless answers to these eternal questions. It is a modern reading of Sun Tzu’s Art of War using the lenses of strategists John Boyd and Simon Wardley (swardley).

(All parts; other reading and viewing formats).

Eco-System Gameplay: Microsoft & GitHub

Chris Adams (12 min read)
Reverse engineering Microsoft’s acquisition of GitHub as an example of the Innovate, Leverage, Commoditize (ILC) gameplay.

Image for post

Plotting a Path to a Greener Web

Chris Adams (15 min read)
Work for the Green Web Foundation on how to use open data and open source to help speed the transition to an internet running on renewable power, e.g. showing energy flow between components in a map of digital services.

Image for post

The Cloud Battle

Chris Adams (7 min read)
Reverse engineering the cloud battle — Amazon vs OpenStack and OpenCloud — illustrating different game plays, e.g. using openness to attack a choke point.

Image for post

Gameplay Examples

Chris Daniel (Krzysztof Daniel) (20 min read)
Basic Constraints: silicon industry specialisation vs generalisation.
Embrace&Extend: Sun vs Microsoft re: Java Virtual Machine.
Customer Isolation: Microsoft vs Amazon re: cloud using GitHub.
Threat Acquisition: Blockbuster and Netflix.
Signal Distortion: UBI Blockchain Internet, Google+, Samsung.
Vertical Movements: Tesco Beauty, Ford Innovation Center, Tesla.
Fighting with “Open”: Linux vs Windows, LibreOffice vs OpenOffice, RedHat.
Influencing Your Customers: Blackberry, NJU Mobile, MediaMarkt & Saturn.

Context Specific Capability Assessments

Chris McDermott (7 min read)
”Maturity Mapping” is an innovative evolution of Wardley Mapping informed by Dave Snowden’s Cynefin that helps us move beyond traditional maturity models and instead make context specific assessments to guide future learning and improvements based on the needs of the team, the organization and the customers.

Image for post

Saving Your Business with Wardley Maps

Cory Foy (39 min video)
A fictional case study based on real-world events in navigating strategic threats and situational awareness to create winning gameplays.

Image for post

Understanding the Data Landscape and Its Evolution

Ergest Xheblati (9 min read)
Analysis of data, usage and evolution.

Image for post

Platform Gameplay: Amazon’s Game Engine

Howard Rees (4 min read)
Reverse engineering Amazon’s cloud-hosted game engine (Lumberyard) looking at the parallels to Amazon’s Infrastructure-as-a-Service (Iaas) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) gameplays in cloud computing and big data platforms.

Image for post

Mapping Immersive Experiences at BBC

Jacob Clark (11 min read)
Transforming the BBC’s way of building and delivering educational apps and games including an exemplary use of maps at work to understand where each of the components required to ship the apps sit in terms of the maturity against the value they deliver.

Image for post

What in the World is World-Class Engineering?

J. D. Carlston (9 min read)
How to visualise “world-classiness” and the attributes world-class engineers, teams, and organisations have.

Image for post

A Wardley Map of the Company NVIDIA in 2020

Joaquín Peña Fernández (joapen) (4 min read)
Analysis of Nvidia and the semiconductor ecosystem across the three zones:
peace (growth in data centres), war (commoditized chips used for general purpose computing and graphics) and wonder (innovation to meet needs like massive computation required for AI).

Image for post

The World of Video Games

Joaquín Peña Fernández (joapen) (11 min read)
The video games industry from the beginning to the future.

Image for post

Turning Around IBM, Part 1

Julius Gamanyi (10 min read)
Reverse engineering Gerstner’s turnaround of IBM in the 90s by looping through the Strategy Cycle illustrating how initiatives change doctrine.

Image for post

Turning Around IBM, Part 2

Julius Gamanyi (10 min read)
Reverse engineering Gerstner’s turnaround of IBM in the 90s by looping through the Strategy Cycle illustrating how initiatives change doctrine.

Image for post

Turning Around IBM, Part 3

Julius Gamanyi (10 min read)
Reverse engineering Gerstner’s turnaround of IBM in the 90s by looping through the Strategy Cycle illustrating how initiatives change doctrine.

Image for post

Reverse Engineering AirBnB’s Strategy

Malcolm Silberman (14 min read)
Including an in-depth visual analysis of potential gameplays available to AirBnB.

Image for post

Healthcare Information Technology Strategy

Mark Wardle (9 min read)
How can we make best use of technology to support healthcare?

Image for post

Visualizing the Work of a Software Delivery Lead

Peter Pito

Image for post

Leading an Organization

Simon Wardley (swardley) (15 min read)
Experiences in how to lead an organization using situational awareness through mapping including a phased approach to doctrine.

Image for post

Leveraging Diverse Expertise

Simon Wardley (swardley) (6 min read)
Working with different characteristics of evolution and showing how experts (both generalists and specialists) from different fields can share and communicate with each other preventive healthcare through the use of maps and thereby improve the maps.

Image for post

Building a Business From a Great Idea Using AWS Lambda Services

Simon Wardley (swardley) (10 min read)
A future scenario of how we build a business in order to explore the future potential of AWS Lambda services.

Image for post

Serverless Development

Slobodan Stojanović (7 min read)
A tale of Amazon Web Services (AWS) Lambda development showing what problem serverless development solves — illustrated by maps.

Image for post

Evolution of Battery Tech and Its Impacts on Robotics

Steve Purkis

Image for post

Traditional Life Industry

Tim Vieyra

Image for post

Evolution of Architectural Components in Software Systems

Tom Asel (26 min video)

Image for post

Please let me know your favorite Wardley Mapping example and I will include it!

The Art of Strategy: All Parts

Contents: A very short summary of each part
Introduction: What is strategy and why do you need it?

  1. Assessments: How to assess, prepare and shape
  2. Challenges: How to use and reduce inertia, entropy and friction
  3. Success: How to succeed together with stakeholders
  4. Setup: How to create resilience
  5. Momentum: How to use creativity focus and timing
  6. Shaping: How to shape and avoid being shaped
  7. Engagement: How to engage using surprise
  8. Adaptations: How to adapt to shifting situations
  9. Movements: How to move to optimize momentum
  10. Landscape: How to approach difficult areas
  11. Situations: How to handle difficult situations
  12. Disruption: How to disrupt and avoid being disrupted
  13. Intelligence: How to use intelligence to create foreknowledge

Annex: Wardley Mapping Examples
Glossary: Explanation of key terms and symbols
Acknowledgements: Standing on the shoulders of giants
Sources: Where to learn more
Other reading and viewing formats

This is provided as Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International by the author, Erik Schön.

Wardley Mapping is provided courtesy of Simon Wardley (swardley) and licensed as Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International.

Executive and strategist who has successfully developed and deployed strategy for over 20 years in small, medium and large organizations.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store