Affinity diagram, which is also known as KJ method is a commonly used technique for brainstorming sessions in companies and organizations. This technique was invented back in 1960 by a businessman Kawakita Jiro that explains why it is also referred to as KJ method. The key purpose of affinity diagram is to generate, coordinate and organize the different thoughts and decisions from different people in a team and use those thoughts as a single unit to point the team in the right direction. Usually this diagram is prepared on a gram with symbols and diagrams that help the entire team understand the situation in a better way.
Importance of Affinity Diagrams:
There are dozens of benefits and important factors about affinity diagrams that force you to use this technique or strategy in your business but most importantly, this is one of the decision making techniques that allow the whole team to participate in the decision making process. You know that two heads are better than one and three heads are better than two. This means when the entire team is involved in the decision-making, there will be more chances that you can easily eliminate all the uncertain factors and be surer about your decision.
Moreover, as the entire team takes part in the decision making process and think like a single unit, there are great chances that they will learn more about how to work in a team and how to react to other people’s thoughts and solutions. This way you can build a better and more efficient team for your company that will result in better output and more productivity.
Here is preview of a Free Sample Affinity Diagram Template created by our staff in house using MS Word,
Application of Affinity Diagrams in Business:
There are many scenarios and situations in which you can easily and conveniently use affinity diagrams but most importantly, when you have to make a big decision or there are many choices to choose from and you aren’t sure what option to pick, affinity diagram is here to help you out. With this diagram, you can make complex decisions and be more certain that you have made the right choice.
There are many situations when you have a problem and in order to solve it, you also have more than one choice to choose from and you can’t think of a way to choose the best decision out of the list. In that kind of situation, you can use affinity diagram. This system or technique of affinity diagram is more helpful especially when the problem and it’s solution is too complex or overwhelming for you and you are not in the position to make the right decision.
In a business, often comes situation and scenarios in which you have to be more certain about what you decide. This means that no matter what choice you make, you have to be certain that this won’t backfire in the future and you will not face the same problem again. The good news is that affinity diagrams present possible outcomes or results with each solution which means you can easily decide which choice is best for you.