Microdoctrine: Wardley Doctrine Piece by Piece

Wardley Doctrine is a doctrine developed by Simon Wardley within Wardley Mapping.

“Doctrine are the basic universal principles that are applicable to all industries regardless of the landscape and its context.”

https://medium.com/wardleymaps/doctrine-8bb0015688e5

There is a lot of doctrine. It consists of 44 principles, many of which are entire topics onto themselves. Many writings on doctrine exist. Simon provided these under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. There are many ways to learn doctrine.

I wanted to experiment with the structure of doctrine. I hoped that I could structure it to make it easier to learn and adopt. I want to be able to assess my level of doctrine adoption. And, if I am adopting doctrine, I want to know what I should adopt next. With these goals in mind, I set out to create a doctrine format that breaks up doctrine into small pieces. I call this microdoctrine.

Microdoctrine takes inspiration from a pattern language. It organizes around the principles outlined by Simon. It breaks up those principles into specific practices for individual learning. For example:

Phase: Stop Self Harm
Category: Development
Principle: Focus On User Needs
Practice: Examine Transactions

Motivation:
Any value we create is through meeting the needs of others. A mantra of “not sucking as much as the competitors” is not acceptable. We must be the best we can be.

Consider these first:
Know Your Users

Illustrative description:
Look at the transactions that an organisation makes with the outside world. Examine the customer journey when interacting with those transactions.

Detailed description:
Look at the transactions that an organisation makes with the outside world. This will tend to give you an idea of what it provides and what is important. Next, examine the customer journey when interacting with those transactions. Question this journey and talk with customers. You will often find pointless steps or unmet needs or unnecessary needs.

Another mechanism, if you adopted Wardley Mapping, is to map out the user’s landscape. By mapping out their landscape, you can often clarify what the user needs. You can also find entire new opportunities for business.

STOP READING, TAKE ACTION
Consider next:Align Value Generation With User Needs or Consider Stage of Evolution

“Consider these first” and “Consider next” links express sequencing. This is to answer what principle to adopt next. This also intends to provide immediate benefit. At the same time, it intends to build up ability to adopt future practices.

I completed the first nine doctrine principles in microdoctrine format.  These make up Phase I: Stop Self Harm. They are all listed on the Wardley Mapping community site. The starting place is Phase I : Development : Know Your Users.

I can imagine us, doctrine practitioners, organizing around the microdoctrine structure. Each of us could contribute our specific expertise. For example, Phase I : Communication : Challenge Assumptions practices all deal with Spend Control. An expert on Cynefin could contribute a Phase I : Communication : Challenge Assumptions : Ritual Dissent practice for us to consider. My hope is that microdoctrine provides minimal scaffolding for us to organize around.

What do you think? Is this structure useful for learning or assessing doctrine? Are the existing patterns valid? Do you want to add patterns you know about?

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