Episode transcript The transcript is generated automatically by Podscribe, Sonix, Otter and other electronic transcription services. Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Five Minutes Podcast. Today I like to share with you one tip: The affinity diagram. Most of the time, when we try to think about ideas or try to create some kind of order or some kind of organization in ideas in items, usually we always move from top to bottom. Maybe this is the way we were educated, or maybe it's a cultural behavior. We go from top to bottom. For example, for those who work in project management, it's like the work breakdown structure or WBS. You go from the top and then you start breaking, breaking breakthroughs until you have the smaller pieces that are the work package. Okay? However, the affinity diagram works in the opposite way. Instead of going from the top to the bottom, you go from the bottom to the top. Most of the time, what you want, you were looking to bring some sort of organization from chaos. You have a large amount of data and you have no structure. So a large amount of post-its are on the wall and you need to bring them and put them into groups. This is the best use of the affinity diagram. The affinity diagram also helps you because it breaks most of the time, the traditional pattern of thinking, the traditional way that we think. So because we have a lot of bias. So most of the time, for example, how do you organize a menu in a restaurant? Most of the time, people are always thinking, oh, I should organize fish, pasta, meat, dessert, appetizer. Did you see 99.9% of the restaurants are like that? But why not think about a menu in a different way? For example, by the time of preparation, for example, a section called in a hurry. So the foods that you can order, if you are in a hurry or the foods for slow food, that you have plenty of time to wait for them to be coked and this please, I'm just using this as a simple example. So it's a very clear way of breaking and creating new patterns of thinking. So how do you do that? Let's suppose you have nothing so far, so, and you are generating ideas. So you'll generate ideas and you need to register every single idea in a post-it note, it can be an idea. It can be a risk, it can be an approach. It can be a user group of the new software you're developing. It can be a stakeholder group. It can be a stakeholder group, you know, the names of the stakeholders, whatever. And then you put each of them in a post-it note, and then you map all this in a wall, in a big flip chart. And it's a chaotic thing, right? You have, I would say 50, 60 post-it notes and no order. Then, in groups, and in silence, you and your colleagues, start organizing the notes into groups, but you don't discuss the names because you don't want that the bias affects your decision. So you just move the way you think it's reasonable. And the other colleagues, they will move in the way they think it's reasonable. And it's incredible because at some point people just stop moving. They all agree. And I did this many times, they all agree that that one is the best way of grouping things. After that, then you start talking and you can make circles on the post-it notes and the group will start discussing what should be the title of that group. For example, stakeholders, I can put customers, government, internal personnel, financial institutions, or I can organize them by the haters of my project, the lovers of people that love them indifferent of my project. So I can organize in different ways. And the affinity diagram allows you to do exactly that. And what is the magic for me is that it's very, very simple to make it, just need to be posted in the group. It's very fast and very effective. You will see that many times you break the pattern that you were thinking about grouping things if you were doing it alone. So it's a great exercise. It helped me a lot this week. So I hope it helps you in the future. Okay? See you next week in another five minutes Podcast.