Friday, February 8, 2008

Treasure hunt

My kids love mazes and maps. There's something enchanting and engaging about starting at point A and weaving your way to point B. In particular, my boys (I sense) love the exploratory virtue of treasure maps; as the author and illustrator, I enjoy dreaming and charting their quest. Treasure hunts never get old.

Effectively communication and corporate strategy -- the route to build sustainable advantage in significant markets, as coined by my old strategy partner Paul -- is similar in its treasure-questing. Prophetic strategists are modern day cartographers.

From Wiki:

Cartography combines science, aesthetics, and technical ability to create a balanced and readable representation that is capable of communicating information effectively and quickly.
Whoa ... echoes/parallels thoughts herein (particularly here and here) about the virtue of clear, concise and cogent communication, along with creating a kick-ass corporate strategy. Wiki, please expand ...
The quality of a map’s design affects its reader’s ability to extract information, and to learn from the map. Cartographic symbology has been developed in an effort to portray the world accurately and effectively to convey information to the map reader. A legend explains the pictorial language of the map known as its symbology. The title indicates the region the map portrays; the map image portrays the region and so on. Although every map element serves some purpose, convention only dictates inclusion of some elements while others are considered optional.
Good stuff. Analogized, the quality of a person's communication affects its audience's ability to extract information, and to learn from the communication while engaging a sense of direction. Successful communicators portray their world accurately and effectively. They ground their communication, oftentimes pictorially, with meaningful symbols. Their title indicates their general theme; the substance (map and legends) provides support. Great communication is simple: Convention only dictates inclusion of some elements while others are considered optional.

Simple directions in the world of cartography vis-a-vis corporate strategy: Where to go (significant markets), how to get there (route), and what to do once you arrive (build sustainable advantage).

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