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2x2 Matrix - Categorize your ideas

In The power of the 2x2 Matrix, Lowy and Hood show that the 2x2 matrix lets you exploit tension between 2 opposing forces as the prime source of problem solving energy and direction.
The 2x2 matrix helps you compare items by two independent attributes and to categorize them in four distinct quadrants.

For example, the COCD Box uses two attributes (Original & Feasible) to sort ideas in four quadrants:
Not original + Not feasible = Irrelevant
Not original + Feasible = Now
Original + Not feasible = How
Original + Feasible = Wow

The 2x2 matrix is used by many famous frameworks such as :

  • The SWOT: Origin & Effect
  • The BCG Matrix: Growth Rate & Market Share
  • The ANSOFF Matrix: Product & Market
  • The Gartner Magic Quadrant: Execution & Vision

And it's an easy way to create a dynamic framework with your own attributes.

1. List your items

Write down all the items you want to categorize by creating one card for each of them.

Note to the facilitator:

  • You can replace this single step by a more sophisticated ideation process.
  • You can also define all the items before the collaborative session and start directly at the second step.

2. Evaluate items

For each card, rate from 0 to 10 points according to the two attributes:

  • 0 means this item does not have this attribute
  • 10 means this item does have this attribute

Try to evaluate each card.

Note for the facilitator:
Before the workshop :

  • Define your own 2 attributes in settings > Card's criteria and change the name of the 4 Quadrants.
  • Define as many options as needed before the rate. It can be done with an ideation step.

3. Discuss results and categorize items

Look at the results.

On the bubble chart, you can see the distribution of all bubbles according to the criteria, it gives you an overview of all evaluations made by the participants.
This distribution defines in which group each item goes.

A =
B =
C =
D =

Note to the facilitator:

Add the name of each group to help participants understand the bubble chart.

Categorize all the cards by moving them to their group. It can take a little time, you can ask participants to help you.

  • Click on a bubble, it will open the corresponding card.
  • Click on Move and select the corresponding group.
  • Each bubble should have the color of its group

4. Take actions

Your ideas are now sorted in 4 different quadrants that you will be able to address separately.

For each groups, decide collaboratively what type of actions you should take.
For each cards, decide how this action will be done.

Click on a card and define your action according to three questions :

  • What action do we do?
  • Who will be in charge?
  • When do we do it?

To fill these categories, click on the card you want to augment, click on the blue line underneath, write your contribution and click on "Save".

Note to the facilitator:

  • You can assign a group to each participant or let them free to add actions where their interest goes.

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