Create Roadmaps to Set Expectations and Communicate What’s Going On

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One of the ways to be awesome at work is to create roadmaps that lay out the big “projects” or “initiatives” for your team. 

This helps you easily plan in a visual way, get your team on the same page, and communicate to other teams, both your impact and what’s going on.

No “Black Box” Here

Roadmaps smash the perception that your team is a “black box” or that your team is just a random bunch of activity.

Roadmaps are also a great way to help build high performance teams because you can rally the team around the initiatives, and keep everybody focused on the most important outcomes. 

Demonstrate Strategic Thinking and Execution Excellence

Another beauty of a great roadmap is that you also instantly set yourself apart from all the teams that don’t have one.   You instantly demonstrate strategic thinking and execution excellence (assuming you plan for a healthy cadence, deliver on your promises, and demonstrate great impact.)

I’ve talked about the power of Visualizing Roadmaps for Execution Excellence before, and I gave some good examples.   Here I want to share another way to visualize your roadmap.   

Example Roadmap at a Glance

Here’s one of my favorite samples of a team roadmap at a glance:

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Your “Editorial Calendar” for Stuff You Ship

The big deal is that this is your “editorial calendar” for other people to easily see what to expect when.

Here are the key design points:

  1. Keep it simple by focusing on just the big projects that are “above the line”
  2. Include a “below the line” section, where you identify important activities to “Run the Business.”
  3. Be able to tell a simple story of why you sequenced the projects and initiatives the way you did, in a way that builds momentum.

If you have a roadmap in place already, good for you.   Practice telling your story of impact, and see how simply everybody on your team can internalize it, and how well understood it is by your partner teams.   

If you don’t have a roadmap in place already, now is a great time to put your plan on paper for how you will do great things for the year.

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