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Affinity Diagram

An Affinity Diagram is a tool that gathers large amounts of language data (ideas, opinions, issues) and organizes them into groupings based on their natural relationships. The Affinity process is often used to group ideas generated by Brainstorming.

When to use?

  • Sift through large volumes of data. For example, a process owner who is identifying customers and their needs might compile a very large list of unsorted data. In such a case, creating an Affinity Diagram might be helpful for organizing the data into groups.
  • Encourage new patterns of thinking. An Affinity exercise is an excellent way to get a group of people to react on a “gut level” rather than mulling things over intellectually. Since Brainstorming is the first step in making an Affinity Diagram, the team considers all ideas from all members without criticism. This stimulus is often enough to break through traditional or entrenched thinking, enabling the team to develop a creative list of ideas.

How to use?

Step 1  Generate ideas
Step 2  Display ideas
Step 3  Sort ideas into groups
Step 4  Create header cards
Step 5  Draw finished diagram

Source:

www.balancedscorecard.org

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