The Story Map is where ideas and action items come together to be evaluated, estimated, prioritized and assigned. It is a “visual” mind map for collecting and sorting through items before they land on the backlog; above all it is a forum for open discussion and clarification that leads to effective iterations that focus on value and minimize waste.
Starting with the “what” “why” “when” and “who” of a project, large items (epics) are analyzed by the team and broken down into manageable chunks of (stories) which ultimately make their way into an iteration (sprint).
All Story Map elements have a Story Card which resides in the database and travels with the item. Each Card contains basic information like a description and acceptance criteria, but also estimates of cost, time, value, and complexity which are key to creating balanced and productive iterations. Other icons on the story cards indicate vital properties such as its workflow state, type, planning status and value/effort estimation in story points.
The Story Card is also a communication tool for team members to comment and provide further insight as needed.
All Story details can be seen in the mouse over or in right pane overview, including the user or team to which it is assigned, the user story and optionally a detailed description,and any relevant file attachments.
Story Workflow and Estimation
Stories pass through several workflow “states” on their way from being newly created and “Ready” through “In Progress” to “Done.” State changes are made manually but automatically reflected through the hierarchy to which the story belongs. Similarly, a story’s value/effort estimation is aggregated and summed up through the hierarchy so that its effect on the overall endeavor is transparent to all.
Issues and Ideas
Although Issues and Ideas can be planned for Releases, Sprints or Kanban and exist independently, they can also be linked to a Story and integrated with its implementation. In the latter case, the Story’s progress is reflected in the original Issue or Idea items.
Stories often require some infrastructural things in place before they can be completed. Infrastructure Stories can be created and a dependency can be made between them and the Stories. Stories with dependencies cannot be executed to completion until the Infrastructure Story’s execution is completed.
Delegation of Stories
Stories can be worked on in their host Circle’s Product or Sprint Backlogs. However, stories can be delegated to other Circles or to third-party applications like Jira. A copy of the story is created in the delegated Circle or application and progress and details synchronized with Agemba. Delegated stories have the “delegation” icon displayed on their story card.
Working in The Storymap
Large Storymaps can be maneuvered on screen and zoomed in and out for ease of use. They can also be filtered to show specific sections of the tree. The tree can be restructured and story types changed. The Storymap, or sections of it can be exported to PDF.
“How to” Video
This video offers a “how-to” go-through of the Storymap
This webinar recording takes you through three ways of approaching Story Mapping that can all be used in Agemba:
- A theme-based Story Map
- User Journey Based
- Impact Mapping