Reaching your goals with Explorer Maps

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One of the situations I often come across is that it’s not easy for (leadership) teams to know and agree on what you need to do to achieve your goals. Especially in complicated situations. You don’t know the exact “road” to your goal. This is because actions are usually based on assumptions about the effect that they will have. Also it can be hard to balance between todays needs and longer term goals.

There is a technique that I introduced after working with leadership teams for quite some years that seems to be helpful in these situations. It aids in aligning todays actions with big goals by visualizing them in a clear way and by refining and improving frequently. These are Explorer Maps.

Explorer Maps show your strategy in a very simple way on paper cards on a big wall. A typical map only consists of 7 to 10 cards, but you review and improve the map often and do a complete overhaul every quarter. Since the maps are simple and clear it will cost you only several minutes each week and one to two hours quarterly. This time is mostly spend having a dialogue about the map which will result in new insights and an adjustment of the Explorer Map.

On this website you will find a short introduction to Explorer Mapping and the template for the maps (including a short checklist). I hope it will be of use for you. If you decide to use it I am very interested to hear about the results and your experience with these maps. One last thing. As with many other things, Explorer Mapping is not so much about the maps but about dialog, experiments, learning and improving.

On this site you will find a short introduction and the template for the maps.