Posts Tagged ‘planning’
Wednesday, June 18th, 2008
The story so far: In the last episode of Influence Mapping: The Maverick Cop Way, we discussed a simple process for organizing what you know about influencers. We discussed briefly the decision making unit model we were using, our (very broad) definition of “influencer”, and showed how we can score them quickly for the three key variables reach, authority, and “ease-of-use”. At the end of the process, we found ourselves with something like this:
Now we’re going to go a little further, and show how we can map the relationships between the various stakeholders. This is the second and final post, and it may introduce a lot more that’s new to you. But stick with it – it might be worth it.
What you’ll need before you start
You’re going to need UCINET, a programme that analyses matrices and networks. It comes along with another programme from the same publishers (Analytictech) called NetDraw that draws networks. You’re going to want both. UCINET costs $250 for a corporate license, but the first 30 days are free. NetDraw is a free download.
They only work on Windows, but I’ve not experienced any real problems running them on a Mac using Parallels.
1. Create a matrix
Take your list of influencers (as per the table above), and add in the four key players from the decision making unit; the initiator, the decision maker, the purchaser and the end user.
Paste them down the left hand side of your table, and along the top edge, as in the illustration below. Excel’s Edit > Paste Special > Transpose command is useful, not to say essential, when you’re doing this. At the end of the process, you should have something that looks like this.
The rows show the influencers, the columns show those being influenced, the targets.
Because we don’t think that an influencer can exert influence themselves we drop a line of zeroes down the diagonal. This is more to help us navigate than anything else. Don’t feel you have to do this.
2. Fill in the matrix
Go through the rows one by one, deciding if a given influencer has any effect on the targets (the column headings). So for example, we know that the initiator influences the decision maker, and so on. But knowledge of the end user may well influence the decision maker, too. So – for example – when I’m choosing my dad a computer, I take into account the fact that he’s not so au fait with technology, and that if he can’t use it, he’s going to call me to ask for tech support. So I’d better choose something that will limit these calls.
At the end of the process, you’ll end up with something like this (although probably much bigger). It can take quite a lot of time to go through this process – this may be one of those times when you want to work with a partner to bounce the ideas around.